Now, even though Senator Kennedy’s life came to an end liberal politics continues. But to discuss possible replacements to pick up where he left off was taboo. Even the most boisterous, power hungry and egocentric politicians refused to at least publicly discuss the issue. But maneuverings behind the scenes most certainly did occur.
Even Senator Kennedy tried to manipulate the selection of his successor by changing the law that allowed a special election to make that determination to one that would give the state’s Democrat governor the opportunity to hand pick who that individual would be.
But aside from that demonstration of political insincerity and hypocrisy, there are reports that Teddy wanted his wife to inherit his senate seat but before his death she indicated no desire for the position. Other reports suggested that Robert Kennedy’s son Joseph was the Liberal Lion’s choice.
That selection would be a tough one to elect. The disturbing details of a messy divorce and Joe’s close ties to Venezuelan strongman Hugo Chavez make him an easy target to focus on and raise doubt about. But he is a Kennedy, which is the most important consideration that Massachusetts politics apparently takes in to account. He is also a former Congressman who still has 2 million dollars in his campaign account.
Other Kennedy’s mentioned included Caroline, President John F. Kennedy’s daughter, but after failing to show herself up to the job when New York’s Governor David Patterson contemplated appointing her to fill Hillary Clinton’s vacant senate seat, she is unlikely to be her uncle’s successor.
Teddy’s sons Edward, Jr. and Rhode Island Congressman Patrick Kennedy are possible contenders but neither really have demonstrated any significant abilities. In fact Patrick’s history of D.U.I.’s makes him a poor choice especially when you combine it with his being a carpetbagger who is serving in Congress as a representative in another state.
There are of course more than just Kennedy’s in Massachusetts and some are seen as strong possibilities.
That list could include the state’s governor,. Deval Patrick, , the state’s attorney general Martha Coakley, Rep. Edward J. Markey; Rep. Barney Frank; Rep. Stephen Lynch; Rep. Michael Capuano; and Rep. James McGovern. Also under
consideration are Former Rep. Marty Meehan, who resigned his seat to become chancellor of the University of Massachusetts and has $4.8 million in leftover campaign funds.
On the Republican side prospects for victory are slim with the most competitive choices being former Governors Mitt Romney and William Weld, former Lt. Gov. Kerry Healey; and former White House chief of staff Andrew Card.
Romney would be wise to forego such a run. I believe he has a better shot at being elected President of the United States than he does at winning another statewide election in Massachusetts. Bill Weld is wacky enough and at times desperate enough to go for it. After serving his two terms as Governor of Massachusetts he briefly ran for Governor and Senator in New York. Briefly. Very briefly.
Andy Card in my opinion could get the nomination but he would go over like a lead balloon and be defeated before the race begins. That leaves former Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healey as a likely choice.
Wherever the chips inevitably land, watching them fall over next few weeks will be very interesting and regardless of all the crocodile tears that many liberal Bay State politicians will be shedding as the nation mourns Ted Kennedy’s death, most of them are dieing to burry Teddy’s body so that they can maneuver themselves into his still warm senate seat.