Lamont '76 Defeats Lieberman in Primary

Lieberman says he is determined to run as an independent

Associated press

Ned Lamont '76 celebrates his victory over incumbent Sen. Joe Lieberman in the Democratic state primary at the Four Points Sheraton in Meriden, Conn. yesterday.

In one of the most closely watched primary elections of the year, Edward “Ned” Lamont, Jr. ’76 defeated Joseph I. Lieberman yesterday in Connecticut’s Democratic primary election for Senate, winning 52 percent of the vote.

Lieberman­—who garnered 48 percent of the votes in Connecticut—filed paperwork this morning allowing him for run as an independent; he has served as Connecticut’s junior senator for the past 18 years.

Lieberman will create a new party—called Connecticut for Lieberman­­­­—in order to ensure that his name is placed higher on the ballot than it would be if he ran as an individual.

Lieberman conceded to Lamont in a phone call at 11 p.m. Tuesday night, but his speech to his supporters last night suggested that he will not be giving up the fight.

“The old politics of partisan polarization won today,” Lieberman said to his supporters. “For the sake of our state, our country and my party, I cannot and will not let that result stand.”

Lamont continued calling for a united Democratic party.

“I would like to see the Democrats united here in Connecticut,” Lamont told CNN. “I want us to present a bold and clear and constructive alternative to the Bush agenda.”

Turnout in yesterday’s primary was the highest it had been in Connecticut since 1970. Tuesday’s election turnout was about 43 percent, compared to the typical 25 percent for primaries.

But Lieberman said that Tuesday’s outcome does not accurately represent the views of all Connecticut voters.

“Less than 15 percent of the registered in Connecticut voted, a little less than 7 percent of the registered voters voted for my opponent,” Lieberman said on CBS’s “The Morning Show.”

Lamont is a fourth generation Harvard graduate, and his daughter currently attends the College. Lamont Library in the Yard is named after Thomas W. Lamont, class of 1892, who was Ned Lamont’s great-grandfather.

—Material from the Associated Press was used in the reporting of this story.
—Staff writer Katherine M. Gray can be reached at kmgray@fas.harvard.edu.