Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Do you believe in miracles??? YESSSSSSSS!!!!!

In 1952, a 35-year old young man named John Fitzgerald Kennedy was elected to the United States Senate out of the state of Massachusetts. He would serve until 1960 when he was elected President. Kennedy encouraged then Democratic governor Foster Furcolo to appoint Benjamin Smith (a close friend of the Kennedy family) to the vacated seat. Many speculated that Smith would be nothing more than a "seat warmer" for two years because in 1962 JFK's youngest brother, Teddy, would reach the age of 30 (the minimum age to serve in the Senate). Sure enough, Edward M. "Ted" Kennedy was appointed Senator of Massachusetts in '62.

So for nearly sixty years, a Kennedy or a Kennedy family flunky has occupied the same seat in the U.S. Senate.

Until now!

In an epic upset in liberal Massachusetts, Republican Scott Brown rode a wave of voter anger to win the U.S. Senate seat held by the late Edward M. Kennedy for nearly half a century, leaving President Barack Obama's health care overhaul in doubt and marring the end of his first year in office.

The loss by the once-favored Democrat Martha Coakley in the Democratic stronghold was a stunning embarrassment for the White House after Obama rushed to Boston on Sunday to try to save the foundering candidate. Her defeat on Tuesday signaled big political problems for the president's party this fall when House, Senate and gubernatorial candidates are on the ballot nationwide.

I recall all the fawning and delirium that surrounded the inauguration festivities last year and how people would have stooped to touch the hem of Obama's garment had they been able to get close enough. Almost one year later, Obama had to make a campaign stop on behalf of Coakley in a state he won by 26 points in the 2008 Presidential election. Amazingly, said visit actually seemed to be a detriment to the Coakley campaign.

Add it all up: Democrats were defeated last year in gubernatorial races in two states (Virginia and New Jersey) which went for Obama in '08 and now Brown scores a resounding Senate win in Massachusetts. Does the President really need any more evidence of a referendum against his abomination of a health care bill?

But the one aspect I can't stop thinking about is the delicious irony of a special election. It was Ted Kennedy himself who, in 2004, encouraged the Massachusetts legislature to change the law which gave the state's governor the purview to appoint a Senator to a vacated seat. Hence, a special election is now required to fill an open Senate seat in Massachusetts. The motivation behind such a law change was to prevent then Governor Mitt Romney from appointing a fellow Republican to John Kerry's senate seat had he been elected President. But Kerry lost, thus making the law change moot. Had Kennedy just left well enough alone, the authority to fill a vacant Senate seat would have remained with the Governor's office, now occupied by Democrat Deval Patrick. Think about that! It is only because of Kennedy's actions nearly six years ago that something he tried to prevent (a Republican Senator from Massachusetts) has actually come to fruition.



Mr. D said...

Good post, Brad. And you are quite right to put particular focus on how the Democrats were hoist on their own petard on this one.

Couldn't have happened to a nicer bunch of guys.

StarBittrune said...

My thoughts exactly, Brad. The Kennedy political dynasty really ended with Teddy's passing, and although I would have preferred to see him defeated by voters than by death, it brought great joy to our household to see voters deny the Democrats' pretended birthright to his Senate seat.

erin said...

Kudos for Scott Brown. The thing that surprised me the most was how even CBS (the early show) seemed to be sad that he won, like, "what will MA do now that they have him!"

I'm a proud republican and in my state, I hope we can kick our crooked democratic governor out soon and vote in a republican!