Tuesday, Joe Lie-berman will make his presentation before the Democratic Caucus on why he should retain his chairmanship of the Dept. of Homeland Security. There's a Survivor quality to all this. Who are the alliances? Who will vote the opposite of what's expected? What will the final vote be?

There have been public statements on both sides airing in the media, and enormous conversation in the blogosphere. But the ultimate decision will be made behind closed doors. It's not just that we won't hear the presentation. (Yeah, I'm bettin' it'll be one of those non-apology apologies, too.) It's that we won't hear each Senator's comments. But there'll likely be much posturing and venting and "unacceptables" and "Joe's a good friend of mine..." back and forth.

But what it really comes down to is, if the cronies trump the accountability, then how can the American people ever trust you again, Senators? Because it's gone beyond whether the Democratic Caucus can trust one that they profess is really, scratch the surface campaign sins, one of their own...

While the caucus will decide, it's not for the caucus or for the ego of Joe Lie-berman or for the netroots or for the good of the Senate or for Cokie and the punditocracy or whatever that this decision will be made.

It's for the integrity of representative democracy...and whether one Senator can set himself above all the other Senators, above the voters, above his own word...whether he can play God. And in the doing, flout ethics, flout responsibility to his oath of office, flout honor and trustworthiness. Whether he can obstruct and subvert the oversight responsibilities of the chair and then blithely expect to sit in it again.

The voters have spoken on that. And now, the Democratic Caucus must speak.