Photo Credit: Public Domain / Wikimedia
US Senator Joseph Lieberman, 2005

Former US Senator Joseph Lieberman, the first observant Jewish lawmaker to serve in the Congress, has passed away at the age of 82.

According to a statement from his family, Lieberman died due to complications from a fall Tuesday night.


Lieberman was an Orthodox Jew who observed the Shabbat, was a staunch supporter of Israel and had a close relationship with the Lubavitcher Rebbe and Chabad.

Born Joseph Isadore Lieberman in Stamford, Connecticut on February 24, 1942, Lieberman attended Yale University, earning a double Bachelors Degree in political science and economics, after which he attended Yale Law School, graduating with an LLB degree in 1967.

Lieberman began his professional career as an attorney for a New Haven-based law firm before running for Connecticut’s State Senate. After winning in 1970 he served for a total of 10 years, including three terms as Majority Leader and then as the state’s Attorney General from 1983 to 1989; he won the 1988 election to become Connecticut’s US Senator, and then was re-elected in 1994, 2000 and 2006.

He served as a US Senator from Connecticut from 1989 to 2013, walking to the Capitol on Shabbat when his presence was deemed necessary for a vote.

Lieberman was chosen by then-Vice President Al Gore to be his running mate for the Democratic Party in the 2000 presidential election, becoming the first Jewish candidate to do so.

“Senator Lieberman’s love of God, his family and America endured throughout his life of service in the public interest,” the family said in their statement, adding that the senator’s wife Hadassah and other family members were present at beside when he passed away.

The Senator is survived by his wife Hadassah and their three children.

Baruch Dayan HaEmet.


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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for, and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.