When Sen. Joe Lieberman told reporters that he wouldn't hesitate to join a Republican filibuster against closing debate on the health care bill, it was widely interpreted as a slap in the face of Democrats, Lieberman's Senate colleagues and the majority leader, Harry Reid. It was so obviously that, right? NBC's Ken Strickland has a different point of view. Lieberman, in fact, gave Harry Reid a victory. He said he wouldn't vote against bringing the bill to the floor -- which is really all that Reid expected of him. What Lieberman intends to do four weeks from now when the political atmospherics are almost certainly different -- that's anyone's guess. Here's Strickland's metaphor:
Point is, Reid needs first downs before he can get to the end zone or even the red zone. And right now, he doesn't even have the votes for that first down. So let's not get too far ahead of ourselves and try to predict what will happen in the red zone -- if Democrats carry the ball that far.