Thursday, June 05, 2008

Obama Talks Tough with Lieberman

This report from Roll Call (via TPM) intrigued much interest yesterday....
Furthermore, during a Senate vote Wednesday, Obama dragged Lieberman by the hand to a far corner of the Senate chamber and engaged in what appeared to reporters in the gallery as an intense, three-minute conversation.

While it was unclear what the two were discussing, the body language suggested that Obama was trying to convince Lieberman of something and his stance appeared slightly intimidating.

Using forceful, but not angry, hand gestures, Obama literally backed up Lieberman against the wall, leaned in very close at times, and appeared to be trying to dominate the conversation, as the two talked over each other in a few instances.

Still, Obama and Lieberman seemed to be trying to keep the back-and-forth congenial as they both patted each other on the back during and after the exchange.

Afterwards, Obama smiled and pointed up at reporters peering over the edge of the press gallery for a better glimpse of their interaction.

Obama loyalists were quick to express their frustration with Lieberman's decision and warned that if he continues to take a lead role in attacking Obama it could complicate his professional relationship with the Caucus.

That's called doing an LBJ. Lyndon Johnson had an infamous intimidating move, in which he would tower over and physically intimidate fellow legislatures into doing what he wanted. I wonder if Obama's read Robert Caro's books.

Lord, that was pleasing to read. Lieberman has been an annoying thorn, correcting McCain's gaffes as he traveled in Iraq.

Now, today, ABC has more info regarding what that mysterious exchange was about:

Sen. Joe Lieberman, the self-described "Independent Democrat" who caucuses with the Democratic party in the Senate even though he has endorsed Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz, got some tough talk from Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, yesterday about his advocacy for the presumptive Republican presidential candidate and the general tone of the campaign, Democratic sources tell ABC News.

The two spoke intensely for approximately five minutes, with no one able to hear their conversation. Reporters watched as Obama leaned closely in to Lieberman, whose back was literally up against the wall.

Lieberman is rumored to be scheduled to address the Republican Convention. We'll see. That Obama is a pretty convincing guy.

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