I have long been a fan of elected officials being able to reach across the party lines in order to work together on passing meaningful legislation. I think that is why candidates who might be a little more conservative than the Democratic base but will pass productive legislation, like Mark Warner, remain very popular. A lot of other Democrats have expressed similar sentiment. Plus many of us take pride in the plain and simple fact that it's the Democratic Party that is the big tent party.
It is along those lines that I have mixed feelings about how so many people are calling for Joe Lieberman to be kicked out of the Democratic Caucus. These calls are being renewed now that he's giving a speech at the Republican National Convention and there's a possibility he might be McCain's pick for VP. I completely understand how a leading member of the Democratic Party shouldn't be out campaigning for the Republican presidential candidate. It's one thing to be disappointed with your own party's candidate, but it's another to go out and be one of the top spokesmen for the opposing party. Kicking him out of the Democratic Caucus might just be the reaction that is needed.
I simply wonder if that's the appropriate course of action. Another solution might be to simply let him remain in the Democratic Caucus, but to remove him of his leadership positions. Giving someone the chairmanship of the Senate's Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, after all, shouldn't be the leadership's way of rewarding someone who so drastically disagrees with the views on national security and foreign affairs of the Democratic base.
As of now, I tend to believe the second option is the one that should be taken -- let him stay in the Democratic caucus but remove him from his leadership position. If he continues to actively campaign for Republicans over the next few years, then it'll be time to kick him out of the caucus. That's just my two cents worth though. Any thoughts?