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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Will There Ever Be Shabbat in The Senate Again?

Joe Lieberman, the Shomer Shabbat, Shabbat observing Senator, won't be running for another term.  He is rare among American Jews in that he made it in American politics while keeping many of the commandments others considered stumbling blocks. 

His way of observing Shabbat and other mitzvot, commandments isn't exactly the same as mine, but he is much more Torah observant than your average Jew, whether in the USA or here in Israel.

Lieberman's politics is even more unique, having moved from the Left to Center-Right.  He's principled and not afraid to change allegiance, reminding me of Chanan Porat, who also changed parties when he felt that another party represented his opinions more accurately.

Senator Joseph Lieberman is the first Jewish American to be nominated Vice President by a party with a chance of winning.  Lieberman's success surpassed all of the assimilated Jews who felt that Jewish Law would hold them back.  People respect Lieberman, davka, for the fact that he's committed to his religion.  That's an important lesson.  I hope that he enjoys his retirement.


Shy Guy said...

I don't think you should give much credit for Lieberman's political stances, whether before or after "shifting rightward". He was an overall liberal, complacent sort of guy. I would even say he did more harm than good.

Batya said...

Shy, a little "hakarat hatov," appreciating the good he did, is in order. Are we perfect?

Robertcw72 said...

I dont think he did more harm than good. But, I think stating that he moved center-right is not accurate. He, I would classify is a 90% liberal and a 10% conservative (just using a vague measuring stick, mind you). It was just that the area he tended to support Republicans were high publicity areas like the War on Islamic Fascism and the challenge to unseat him as a senator by Daily Kos and other extreme liberals again, garnered a lot of publicity.

Keli Ata said...

Still, being a religious person in Washington is no easy task. If I am not mistaken he is MO. Perhaps that's how he was able to live in both worlds (religious and secular).

I really don't know too much about his political views or anything

Batya said...

Robert, I agree.
Keli, certainly strong religious faith isn't common in successful politicians. They tend to compromise on religion when it gets in the way of their ambition.
Lieberman is MO, a very vague term in American religious life.
We don't use that term in Israel.