WAS I HALLUCINATING ALL YEAR WHEN I THOUGHT THE NEW REPUBLIC HAD ACTUALLY REVERTED TO LIBERALISM?
Steve Benen has already dealt quite effectively with James Kirchick's TNR article "Let Lieberman Live," and I have nothing much to add. (Yeah, I know I've said myself that I can accept a decision to let Lieberman stay in the Democratic caucus, but if he's allowed to remain, it should be in spite of the fact that he deserves to be kicked out, not because he doesn't. Keep him in if you think mollifying will make it harder for him to do mischief, and if you think he'll then be easier to portray as a bad guy when and if he does go rogue again -- but don't let him stay because he's earned the right to stay.)
But in addition to Kirchick's piece, which reads as if it wandered over from the op-ed pages of The Wall Street Journal or The New York Post ("The people most interested in penalizing Lieberman are a small but noisy group of liberal bloggers and activists..."), there's this bizarre post from Jonathan Chait at TNR's Plank blog:
Today, Barack Obama is meeting with John McCain. Jonathan Martin and Jake Tapper seem confident that a Cabinet position is not in the offing. They're probably right.
But why not? Specifically, I could see McCain as Energy Secretary, tasked with playing a major role in helping Obama pass legislation to deal with global warming. If Obama is going to do something on this front, he'll absolutely need bipartisan help, given the pain and dislocations it would entail. Getting a high-profile Republican to lead the charge would be smart, possibly even essential. And McCain likes both bipartisanship and big, crazy-sounding gambits. I'm not predicting this, but it's just crazy enough to work.
What the hell? McCain? Mr. "Drill, Baby, Drill"? The sneering waver of the tire gauge?
I see the advantages of Barack Obama's preference for making friends out of enemies, but there are limits. McCain could be an ally, but not on this. Hell, if you're going to do this, why not go all the way and make it Energy Secretary Sarah Palin? With Joe the Plumber as budget director?