Former Sen. Joe Lieberman dies at 82

( – Former Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-CT), who made history as the US’ first Jewish candidate on a major party presidential ticket, has passed away. He died at New York Presbyterian Hospital after falling at his Riverdale, Bronx home. The moderate lawmaker was 82 when he died.

The beloved New England independent began his political career in the Connecticut State Senate in 1970, after earning a law degree at Yale Law School in 1967. Lieberman left the position after 10 years to practice law privately, but he returned to public service after he successfully ran for his state’s attorney general seat in 1983. He took that time to tackle environmental polluters, deadbeat parents, and entities that violated consumers’ rights.

Lieberman joined the US Senate in 1988 and went on to win re-election three times. He ran as a Democrat up until 2006, when he opted to change his party affiliation to Independent. He focused his congressional work on improving the environment, strengthening human rights both at home and abroad, investing in public schools, safeguarding Social Security and Medicare for future generations, and improving healthcare access.

The Connecticut lawmaker took his job in public service to heart, speaking up in favor of campaign finance reform and participating in numerous committees and subcommittees throughout his career. Among them, he chaired the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, overseeing the Department of Homeland Security, and he co-authored a bill to create the 9/11 Commission.

Lieberman left Washington, DC, after serving 24 years in the Senate, but he wasn’t ready to leave politics completely behind. He joined the No Labels movement, a group of politicians and activists who believe they can bring both major parties back together and mend the country’s divide. They currently claim to have plans for a “Unity Ticket” if the bulk of Americans are unhappy with the two major parties’ choices for the 2024 general election, but the group hasn’t offered any details on who it might choose as its candidates.

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