Joe. Freakin’. Lieberman.
The latest scuttlebutt surrounding who President Donald Trump might be considering to take over the Director position at the FBI has him leaning towards tapping former Senator and Vice Presidential candidate Joe Lieberman.
Lieberman retired from the Senate back in 2013 and by that time had left the Democrat Party (or perhaps it would be better said that the Democrat Party left him). While he still often voted with the Democrats he had become persona non grata with the left wing of the party over his decision to support a neocon foreign policy while also restraining his more liberal tendencies when dealing with his fellow members of Congress. In fact, as Lieberman became a more beloved American figure by his willingness to be kind to Republicans, he seemingly lost his popularity with his own party.
However, he still retains his credibility and his respect among members of both parties which is one big reason that President Trump is now considering him to replace James Comey. (Another big reason – Trump has come to like Lieberman personally, and they’ve developed a warm relationship.)
Senior administration officials have told others in the last 12 hours that Trump is expected to pick Lieberman to replace FBI director James Comey, who was abruptly fired by Trump last week.
A person familiar with Wednesday’s meeting said Trump bonded with Lieberman, and the president left leaning towards the former Connecticut senator, who retired in 2013. Trump has not signaled otherwise that anyone else is the favorite, aides said, and has told one adviser he wants to make an announcement before he leaves Friday on his first foreign trip.
Trump told reporters Thursday afternoon “we’re very close to an FBI director” and that the pick would be announced soon. When asked whether Lieberman was among the finalists, he replied yes.
Lieberman works at the same law firm as one of President Trump’s top lawyers and would make an unorthodox pick as the agency is not normally run by politicians. Lieberman is also 75 years old and would likely not be able to fill an entire 10-year term. There was also another early warning that the pick might not go over as well as the President hopes – when Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL) heard that Lieberman was the frontrunner for the FBI job he was not very happy.
At a lunch with Democratic senators Thursday, Sen. Dick Durbin and others criticized the pick, according to a person familiar with the meeting.
Lieberman would represent an “out-of-the-box” intelligent choice for the FBI job, as it would give Democrats the “non-Republican” director that they crave while also providing the President with a good opportunity to get his first pick for FBI Director approved quickly.