Now, with the passing of Ted Kennedy Masachusetts Democrats changed the existing laws so that the Democrat governor can fill vacancies with their partisan hacks. This law is consistently changed to suit liberasl needs. In 2004, with the possiblity of Massachusetts Senator Kerry creating a vacancy if he was elected President, at the request of Ted Kennedy, the state legislature changed the law so that Mitt Romney, the state’s Republican governor at the time, couldn’t appoint a fellow Republican to the senate. Now, with a Democrat governor, once again, thanks toTed Kennedy and his deathbed request for Democrats to have the right to replace him with another Democrat, the Massachusetts state legislature changed the law again. This gives Democrat Governor Deval Patrick the ability to appoint someone to fill vacancies to the senate until a special election in January is held.
With that opportunity at hand it looks like only the second non-Kennedy in almost a century will occupy that seat.
Speculation is that Governor Deval Patrick will appoint former Massachusetts Governor and 1988 Democrat Presidential nominee Michael Dukakis to replace Ted until the special election is held in January.
By any logical standard, Dukakis is a likely choice. For Governor Patrick, Dukakis is a safe choice. He is known by just about every state resident, has a certain amount of gravitas and is not a threat to the career of anyone else who might want a shot at the job, so long as Dukakis only intends to just hold the seat until a replacement is elected.
There is still some speculation centered around the wife of Ted Kennedy, Victoria, being appointed to replace her husband. She had stated that she has no interest in the job and by all indications she has not made any signs of changing her mind.
The Kennedy kids have also declined to inherit the Kennedy family senate seat. So without a Kennedy to keep the family slot in the United States Senate, Dukakis is probably the best political choice that Deval Patrick can make without ruffling the feathers of those who are chomping at the bit to get the job for themselves.
In the mix though is the man who members of the Kennedy family say that they want to inherit the family position. That man is former Democrat National Committeman Paul Kirk. Kirk may be the family choice and how much wweight that will carry with Deval Patrick is yet to be seen. The Boston Globe has already endorsed Dukais for the job.
Among those Democrats who are hoping to run in the special election to fill the senate seat in january of 2010 , the list of non-Kennedy candidates is growing. Currently that list includes Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley and Congressman Michael Capuano. Others liberal names include Alan Khazei, founder of a youth service program in Boston called City Year. Another contender is Boston Celtics co- owner Stephen Pagliuca.
On the Republican side Former Boston Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling considered running but the only one to make it official so far is Massachusetts State Senator Scott Brown and Bob Burr, a selectman in the town of Canton. Other GOP figures contemplating a run include former Governor Jane Swift and former Lieutenant Governor Kerry Healey. The most prominent Massachusetts Republican to not run is former Governor and candidate for the Republican presidential nomination Mitt Romney.
As a former Governor and the only Republican yet mentioned who once ran against Ted Kennedy for the job, Romney would be the GOP’s best and most likely choice. Mitt’s decision not run is probably less significant as to the question of who will be the next United States Senator from the Bay State and more significant as it pertains to who will be the next challenger to President Barack Obama in 2012. As the obvious Republican choice for the Senate nomination, Romney’s refusal to go for the job that he once fell short of winning is a sure sign that he his running for something much bigger than the senate.
Can you say President Romney?