Perhaps its because of our founding as a nation and its ideals about the infinite possibilities of humankind that we are forever asking "What if?" and giving answers to that effect. If John Kennedy had lived, he would have stopped the escalation in Vietnam. If his brother had lived, he would have ended the war quickly, saving 20,000 lives and Watergate would still be this weird building where The Atlantic Monthly has its terribly creepy white carpet-and-marble headquarters. More recently–perhaps because of the brilliant HBO movie "Recount"–Democrats have brought up Florida and the hanging chads again. Had Al Gore won, many say, the United States would never have started a preemptive war in Iraq and could have begun the business of climate change much, much earlier.
But had Gore won in 2000 and then in 2004, The Democrats most likely would be faced with something today that seems irreconcilable: Vice President Joe Lieberman as the presumptive Democratic Party nominee. Yes kids, there was a time when Lieberman was not only a party loyalist, but a man deemed worthy of the second slot on Gore’s ticket. Watching his literal kiss with George W. Bush in the Senate chambers and his total support of the presumptive nominee John McCain, we were left to ask, "How on earth did Al Gore pick this guy?"
This question became even more magnified when Lieberman–himself a brief contestant in the 2004 Democratic primaries–when he appeared on Fox and Friends this morning. Now, firmly "independent" and apparently bff with McCain, Lieberman lashed out at Obama’s foreign policies, saying "It’s just not what we want in a president. He’s going to Iraq, but he’s already decided his position. He’s not going to listen to Petraeus. He’s not going to listen to our troops. He’s not going to listen to his own eyes with what he sees there. I think that’s not the kind of leadership we need in the Oval Office."
Democrats could only shudder at the prospect of Lieberman running for president beneath their banner. As they contemplate that, I will resume watching Super Bowl XXIII in my head in which the Cincinnati Bengals actually stop Joe Montana and the 49ers in the waning moments to win the championship and give a glimmer of real happiness in the great emotional void that constitutes my life.