Sen. Lieberman addresses fiscal cliff

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) -- Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman says he's optimistic that the President and House Speaker John Boehner will come to a compromise on the 'Fiscal Cliff' before the end of the year.

Lieberman will make his final speech in the Senate later this week.

In his final days as a Senator, Lieberman is campaigning for an end to the Senate filibuster, which he says has been used by both political parties to cause grid lock on important issues. However, he also says if Democrats give on the growth in spending on Medicare and Republicans give on hiking taxes on the wealthy, a deal on the fiscal cliff is possible.

"If they do agree, the two of them on a program, I think the rest of congress, maybe kicking and screaming, but will go along," Sen. Lieberman said. "That will be really good for the country, probably the best thing we can do for the economy."

"I know you've been working very hard on a cyber security bill, but it appears that's dead, is that right," asked News 8's Mark Davis.

"Well, I think cyber security is goner and I'm really disappointed about it," Sen. Lieberman said. "We got over 50 votes to take up cyber security but not 60. That should have passed and gone to the House for a conference, but it didn't because we didn't get 60 votes."

"How vulnerable do you think the country is on this," asked Davis.

"Eighty-five percent of our infrastructure is owned by the private sector and most of that critical infrastructure; power, electric grid, telecommunications systems, financial networks, oil and gas pipelines, all today managed by cyber systems, all vulnerable to attack from our enemies and it could be an attack that would be greater in its devastation than 9/11 was," said Sen. Lieberman.

Lieberman continued on to say, "it's going to take legislation requiring the government and the private sector to work together to decide what do we have to do to defend ourselves and the country, and then do it."

"You're leaving the Senate on January 3rd and before you leave you're establishing some kind of scholarship, you want to tell us about that," asked Davis.

"We're going to give five scholarships every year to graduates of Connecticut schools and it's my way of saying thank you," Sen. Lieberman said, "so I set a goal to raise over a million dollars to make this a permanent fund that will generate enough money for those five scholarships far into the future."

The Senator says he'll begin the scholarship fund by using the left over money in his campaign fund, estimated to be somewhere between $100,000 and $500,000.

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Connecticut (change)

Connecticut has 169 cities and towns, which serve as the fundamental local political subdivision of the state. Connecticut is the 5th of the original thirteen United States.
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Governor: Dan Malloy
Lieutenant Governor: Nancy Wyman
Attorney General: George Jepsen
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