The Union Leader

Tuesday, January 20, 2004
Page 1 Editorial

Joe Lieberman, man of conviction


THE UNION LEADER doesn’t often look to The New York Times for confirmation of our editorial views, but a Times profile of Democratic Presidential candidate Joseph Lieberman put its finger on why he should be considered
by New Hampshire’s centrist Democrats and like-minded independent voters.

It is also why the Bush White House had better hope that Lieberman, longshot that he is in a party race dominated by far-left views, doesn’t somehow catch fire here next Tuesday.

Describing a campaign encounter with a hostile couple in Concord, here is what the Times said:

“Senator Joseph I. Lieberman has built his career doing what he did that morning: wading across ideological divides, hunting for common ground and doing it with a mix of civility and conviction that at its best has won over Democrats, Republicans and independents alike.”

The word “conviction” keeps coming up when we ask people about Lieberman. It was demonstrated most emphatically in his position on the war in Iraq. While his fellow candidates voted with him in support of that war resolution, they have turned tail now, in light of anti-war Howard Dean’s campaign.

Senators Kerry and Edwards voted for the war but have undercut our troops by voting against the money to win the
peace. But not Lieberman. While harshly criticizing Bush’s post-war operation, he nonetheless stood by his conviction and voted for the necessary funding.

Lieberman has walked an independent line on limited school vouchers, tax cuts, and on the filth that passes for Hollywood entertainment these days. He speaks out unabashedly about his religious convictions and refuses to campaign on the Jewish sabbath.

Make no mistake. We have great differences with many of his social and big-spending positions. His stand on abortion is classic liberal, giving lip service to wanting it to be “safe, rare and legal” but voting in a way that encourages it.

But in a campaign in which the flipflops and outrageous statements are unending, Joe Lieberman’s refusal to pander is
refreshing and remarkable. He is worth the consideration and support of independent-minded primary voters.

Copyright © 2004 The Union Leader Corporation.  Reprinted by permission.  (Joe McQuaid)