Over at Kos
, they link to this CNN item
Lieberman is a strong adherent to his Orthodox Jewish faith. He does not work on the Sabbath, which begins at sundown Friday and ends at sundown Saturday. If an important Senate vote fell on the Sabbath, Lieberman would walk three miles to cast his vote.
Kos poster DHinMI then says: (excerpt)
But isn't it revealing that Joe Lieberman wouldn't campaign to win the presidency on the Sabbath, but a few minutes ago--remember, it is the Sabbath--Lieberman voted against cloture in the Senate and thus against permitting a vote on a resolution repudiating the President's plan for a military surge in Baghdad, a strategy which is supported by almost nobody except a few neocon and Republican dead-enders?
Here's the deal: Lieberman's vote was completely unnecessary!
From (where else?) Wikipedia
: (emp add)
- In 1917 a rule allowing for the cloture of debate (ending a filibuster) was adopted ...
- From 1917 to 1949, the requirement for cloture was two-thirds of those voting.
- ... this rule was revised in 1949 to allow cloture on any measure or motion by two-thirds of the entire Senate membership
- ... in 1959 the threshold was restored to two-thirds of those voting.
- ... in 1975 revised its cloture rule so that three-fifths of the Senators sworn (usually 60 senators) could limit debate.
It was Reid's job to find 60 votes, no matter how many Senators were in the chamber at the time
. Lieberman could have stayed home, like those ten other Senators. (Of note, Democrat Tim Johnson is still in the hospital, which means he "absorbs" one Republican cloture vote, making it a bit harder to stop a filibuster.)
[The issue of cloture numbers is touched on in various comments in the Kos thread here
Clearly Joe Lieberman considered this to be an important Senate vote and made a point of showing up to cast it.