1) A credible promise from Harry Reid, backed up by the money folks on and off line that disloyalty will result in backbench exile along with complete loss of seniority in 2008. Mark Schmidt at TAPPED looks at the initial outline of the 2008 Senate landscape:There were two more, but the first one was the big one. Of course, it requires the Democratic leadership to show discipline and hardassitude that they conspicuously did not display after Joe turned his back on the Democratic party. But if that Tapped analysis is correct, then it would be a very bad gamble indeed for Joe to flip. He would be a Republican hero (and probably committee chair) for two years, and then... nothing.These are the Senators of Class II, those whose seats will be up in 2008. There are 12 Democrats, and 21 Republicans.....The only vulnerable Dem in the class is Mary Landrieu of Louisiana.....That's seven possible pick-ups in 2008, plus three more that could be picked up with the right candidate. And what if Harold Ford runs against Lamar Alexander in Tennessee? What if Susan Collins in Maine draws a strong opponent? What about Elizabeth Dole, whose image of competence is as shattered as Dick Cheney's? That's thirteen seats the Republicans have to worry about either a little or a lot. And almost no potential for gains.(...)
Unfortunately Joe Lieberman will be in the Senate on Jan. 3, 2007, but he should be functionally irrelevant by 2009.
But then again, Joe may still be harboring delusions of presidency, and a misguided belief that all the girlies go crazy for a Bipartisan Statesman, especially the backstabbing kind. If he really thinks he can run and win on some kind of phony maverick "unity ticket" with John McCain in 2008, then he doesn't have to worry about what the next Senate looks like. I say bring it on: I can't think of a better way to keep McCain out of the White House.