Lieberman’s no liberal

Al Gore’s new running mate Joseph Lieberman is an unapologetic self-styled “moral crusader,” who has lashed out at Hollywood for sex and violence on TV, and even at Clinton over the Lewinsky affair. He wears his Orthodox Judaism as a cloak of justification for his crusades, frequently decrying the breakdown of family values and the steady moral decay of our culture. He cast the key Democratic vote to authorize George Bush Sr. to start the Gulf War, and voted in vain to send ground troops into Kosovo.

If you think this guy sounds like an embodiment of the religious right, you wouldn’t be far off. The ACLU has tracked Lieberman’s voting record over his past two terms, and on paper, he looks suspiciously like a Reagan Republican.

In the 104th Congress, Lieberman voted consistent with the ACLU position just 28 percent of the time; in the 105th, his record improved to just 33 percent. For example, he voted against the common dilation and evacuation (D&E) abortion method and against a measure to ensure medical records privacy. He also voted in favor of a federal ban on gay marriage, and in favor of the mandatory discharge of military members who are HIV positive. He also voted to expand the FBI’s power to wiretap telephone converations.