Your email is not valid
Recipient's email is not valid
Submit Close

Your email has been sent.

Click here to send another


Lieberman Will Retire

First Jewish national candidate is four-term senator

Print Email
Sen. Joseph Lieberman, Independent of Connecticut, last month.(Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images)

Joseph I. Lieberman, who in 2000 became the only Jew to run on a national ticket when Democratic candidate Al Gore selected him as his running mate, announced he will not seek a fifth term as senator from Connecticut in 2012, after which his tenure will run out.

The ascension a decade ago of the relatively unknown Lieberman, an Orthodox Jew, as vice-presidential candidate had the effect of educating much of the country about various facets of Judaism (consider this contemporaneous USA Today primer, which makes for a really entertaining read today). After the 2000 loss, he became polarizing among Democrats: He unsuccessfully ran for the 2004 nomination as a staunch backer of the Iraq War; then, having lost the 2006 Senate primary, he switched his allegiance to Independent and won re-election; in 2008, he supported his longtime friend and ideological ally (on foreign affairs) John McCain; and finally, in late 2009, many liberals felt he flip-flopped on and substantially weakened the health care reform bill—contributing editor Victor Navasky argued in Tablet Magazine that Lieberman had “betrayed his Jewish heritage.” For a great wellspring of Lieberman-hate (it goes back longer than I had realized), see here.

More recently, Lieberman shepherded the successful repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” One of 12 Jewish senators, should he not be replaced by a landsmen, then California, the most populous state, would also be the only to be represented by two Jews in the senior chamber. Time to start scrounging for someone we can groom!

No Fifth Term for Lieberman [NYT]
Related: Lieberman’s Betrayal [Tablet Magazine]
Who is Joe Lieberman? [USA Today]
Good Riddance, Joe Lieberman [Slate]
Earlier: Is Joe Lieberman Too Jewish?
How To Explain Joe Lieberman: He’s Just Kinda Dumb!

Print Email

Daily rate: $2
Monthly rate: $18
Yearly rate: $180

Tablet is committed to bringing you the best, smartest, most enlightening and entertaining reporting and writing on Jewish life, all free of charge. We take pride in our community of readers, and are thrilled that you choose to engage with us in a way that is both thoughtful and thought-provoking. But the Internet, for all of its wonders, poses challenges to civilized and constructive discussion, allowing vocal—and, often, anonymous—minorities to drag it down with invective (and worse). Starting today, then, we are asking people who'd like to post comments on the site to pay a nominal fee—less a paywall than a gesture of your own commitment to the cause of great conversation. All proceeds go to helping us bring you the ambitious journalism that brought you here in the first place.

Readers can still interact with us free of charge via Facebook, Twitter, and our other social media channels, or write to us at Each week, we’ll select the best letters and publish them in a new letters to the editor feature on the Scroll.

We hope this new largely symbolic measure will help us create a more pleasant and cultivated environment for all of our readers, and, as always, we thank you deeply for your support.

Marty Janner says:

Senator Leiberman,appears to be a student of the numbers! When they’re with him, he’s ready to go,when they’re negative, goodbye!

It is unfortunate that issues that are important have no value in the eyes of this gentleman….

Enjoy your retirement! Perhaps now, we wiil have a representative who truly represents the people!

David Star says:

Apparently Marty Janner never had an education in numbers.
When he was reelected as an Independent, Lieberman’s numbers were higher than both the Democratic and Republican candidates.
That seemed to indicate that more residents of Connecticut put their trust in him than either of the other two. They have been doing just that for last quarter century.

I also wonder what issues are important to Mr. Janner which he feels the Senator finds to be of no value. Is it unemployment, or saving the Panda or the obvious incompetence of the latest American Nobel Peace Prize winner or is it simply to quote Janner, “…”.

HollyMartins says:

Bye bye Holy Joe!!!

You fake, phoney, fraud!


Your comment may be no longer than 2,000 characters, approximately 400 words. HTML tags are not permitted, nor are more than two URLs per comment. We reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments.

Thank You!

Thank you for subscribing to the Tablet Magazine Daily Digest.
Please tell us about you.

Lieberman Will Retire

First Jewish national candidate is four-term senator

More on Tablet:

Obama: Denying Israel’s Right to Exist as a Jewish Homeland is Anti-Semitic

By Yair Rosenberg — The president draws a line in the sand in his latest interview