There are hundreds, if not thousands, of calls for Joe Lieberman's head on the internet. Maybe hundreds of thousands.
Not so fast.
Democrats are poised to win a filibuster proof 60-to-40 seat majority in the U.S. Senate. It looks as though we may have won in Alaska. Counting Lieberman as a Democrat, that makes 58 Democrats, with two races yet to be decided in Georgia and Minnesota. And those are not the only potential sources of Democratic senators. A Republican senator might be convinced to switch parties in exchange for a plum committee chairmanship. Or a Republican senator from a state with a Democratic governor might be persuaded to accept a cabinet position with the Obama administration: Commerce Secretary Olympia Snowe anyone?
Too much good could be done with 60 seats in the Senate for us to toss that possibility away out of pride or anger. Barack Obama definitely sets an example for his fellow Democrats in this situation: be cool. Wait and see what happens in Minnesota and Georgia. Talk to Republicans in the Senate who don't want to stay in a party that is led by Sarah Palin and will be permanently in the minority. Richard Shelby used to be a Democrat--could he be persuaded to "come home"?
If we fall short of 60, then January is time enough to deal with Lieberman. There isn't much difference between 58 and 59 senators; there is a world of difference between 59 and 60 senators. I don't like Joe Lieberman any more than most Democrats, but for now we must be patient.