It is with much relief that I note the overthrow of a few incumbents in last night’s Primaries. While Ned Lamont had an early 20 point lead over Joe Lieberman in the Connecticut race, the gap narrowed as the evening wore on before settling on a 4 point difference. I was interested in this race, as it was an important indicator of the forces working to revitalize the Democratic Party.
The focus on Lieberman has been nationwide, even if the voters where limited to a single state. For them, the issues may have been simpler; a move against a representative who had ceased to represent. For the nation as a whole, his defeat removed a “Fox News Democrat” from the party and showed the growing influence of the progressive movement in challenging the flawed strategies of the major Democratic institutions.
Also, in a strike against the other extreme of the party, Cynthia McKinney has also been defeated in Georgia. The victor, Hank Johnson, ran on a platform of “anyone but McKinney” to claim 59% of the vote. Reports indicate Johnson is a moderate who should help bring some dignity to the seat.