Saturday, August 05, 2006

What Happened?

I suppose this lends support to the "he got pouty when no one wanted him to be president" theory. Inspired by this:

Mr. Lieberman, in an interview on the campaign trail on Friday, suggested he had been as critical of the administration as Mrs. Clinton in some ways. “I had to laugh at — I don’t mean laugh, but be surprised at all the attention to Senator Clinton calling for Rumsfeld to resign,” Mr. Lieberman said, pointing to comments he had made as far back as 2003 indicating that if he were president, he would ask Mr. Rumsfeld to step aside. But Mr. Lieberman never demanded that Mr. Bush take that step.

I went to look for it. And he did in fact do so:

Sen. Joseph Lieberman (D-Conn.), a Democratic presidential hopeful, said Rumsfeld is unpopular with the military and President Bush should fire him. "If I were President, I'd get a new secretary of defense," Lieberman told CBS' "Face the Nation."

And then I discovered that as much of a wanker as Lieberman is, he did in fact become a much bigger wanker after he was part of a four way tie for third place in his home state of Connecticut. Consider other things he said on that Face the Nation.

Sen. LIEBERMAN: You're--you're absolutely right. Look--look, the administration keeps talking--Ambassador Bremer, President Bush, Secretary Rumsfeld, 'Everything's going great in Iraq.' We know everything is not going great in Iraq, even those of us who feel that what we did in Iraq was--was right, that the world is safer with Saddam Hussein gone feel even more intensely that the administration has--has really messed this up by its one-sided foreign policy which--which has kept other countries away from helping us and--and by its failure to have any kind of plan to secure post-Saddam Iraq.

Remember General Eric Shinseki, the head of the Army, earlier this year, said that we would need more than 200,000 troops, not just to win the war but more to secure the peace. He was right. Secretary Rumsfeld, the administration, all--they disagreed with him. They, in some senses, demeaned him. The fact is that if the--the administration had a more multilateral, open, cooperative policy, we'd have foreign troops in there helping American troops to keep the peace. We'd have foreign countries paying more of the cost of rebuilding Iraq than they were willing to pledge the other day in Madrid.

SCHIEFFER: Do you think this means that perhaps the president ought to change secretaries of Defense?

Sen. LIEBERMAN: Well, look, ultimately the buck stops at the--at the w--president's desk. He's the commander in chief. He has to take accountability if things don't work well. I'll--I'll--I'll tell you this, that Secretary Rumsfeld told the truth in that private memo, that they haven't been as trusting of the American people to tell us the truth about the fact that we're not doing as well as they--that we should be doing in the war on terrorism and the war in Iraq. And--and the worst thing about Don Rumsfeld's time at the Pentagon, the uniform military feel deeply that he doesn't respect them, doesn't listen to them. That--that's not the kind of relationship that we need between a secretary of Defense and the military. Judgment about whether he stays or not is up to President Bush, but if I were president, I'd--I'd get a new secretary of Defense.

SCHIEFFER: You would?

Sen. LIEBERMAN: I would.