Who'd have thought it? Gail Collins, whose columns in the New York Times are often insightful and frequently hilarious, has a snarky side. Collins may have a preference for the humorous jab, but on learning of Joe Lieberman's decision to leave the Senate in two years, her response was, essentially, "don't let the door hit you in the rear." Why?
Let us concede that Lieberman might sometimes appear a bit too preachy for some tastes. Some see him as sanctimonious. Others seem to see him as, gasp, "disloyal." The Left sees him as a traitor within the Democratic ranks and the Right sees him as an occasional ally but one who can't be counted upon. The truth is, Lieberman is neither fish nor fowl, which makes him the kind of member of Congress we should all hope for; one who decides issues on their merits, not party dictates, and who listens to his constituents, not party insiders.
Consider the 2006 race in which an opportunistic millionaire named Ned Lamont challenged, and narrowly defeated, Lieberman in Connecticut's Democratic primary for the Senate in a race that highlighted the way in which closed party primaries distort the election process. Instead of fading away, Lieberman ran in the general election as an Independent and beat Lamont by a whopping 10 points. While he was not the choice of narrow party activists, he was the choice of the Connecticut electorate.