Lieberman burns his bridges: Will speak at RNC

Even though he was a Democrat, I've always liked Joe Lieberman.

He "got it" on many issues near to my heart; the trashing of our culture, the importance of Israel as an ally, our role in a dangerous world. Lieberman sees many things clearly - even though his is a huge union booster and an advocate of top down solutions to social problems.

Kicked out of the Democratic party for his apostasy on the Iraq War but still allowed to caucus with the Dems so that they could maintain their majority in the senate, Lieberman can see the writing on the wall as well as anyone. The fact is, the Democrats will almost certainly not need his vote to maintain a majority next year after the GOP loses at least 2 seats and perhaps as many as 6 in the senate. And Lieberman knows that there are several Democratic senators who covet his Homeland Security chairmanship as well as his seat on the Armed Services Committee as well.

This means that come 2009, the Democrats will publicly humiliate Lieberman, emasculating him by stripping him of his plum committee assignments while the liberal netroots who hate Lieberman almost as much as they hate Bush cheer them on.

Recognizing his position, it appears that Lieberman is about to throw his lot in with his good friend John McCain - if not as Vice President (many believe him to be McCain's first choice but simply not possible under the circumstances) then as a major backer on the sidelines and possible cabinet member in a McCain Administration. Lieberman is scheduled to speak at the Republican convention:

The AP is reporting that Lieberman has accepted a speaking role at the convention, time and date to be announced. It will almost certainly be a prime time slot.

Do not expect Zell Miller like fireworks denouncing liberals. Lieberman just isn't that sort of Democrat. He is a classic liberal in the mold of a Hubert Humphrey; an optimist whose deep religious faith informs his politics as much as any evangelical Christian. Would he consider joining the Republicans in 2009? He may. But there are many on the GOP side who don't want him. He would be by far the most liberal Republican legislator in Washington and would therefore be an embarrassment at times. Therefore, it is likely that Lieberman will remain an "independent" but may caucus with the GOP for purposes of the leadership votes and other party line matters that come before the senate.

It goes without saying that the Democrats are going to be livid with Joe. But considering the invective hurled at him by his critics already, what more can they say to hurt him?