Kennedy Sought To Overturn Himself

Last week, Sen. Edward Kennedy made a real heart-tugging appeal to the State of Massachusetts to change the law so that the Governor can appoint a successor for his senate seat.

Obviously his concern was in keeping a 60 seat (filibuster-proof) majority in the Senate, which could play a role in whether or not the President’s imaginary health care/insurance bill gets passed. Already, the Democrats are considering ramming ‘the bill’ down America’s collective throat by a procedural measure that is not meant to be used for a massive piece of legislation that takes control of nearly 20% of our economy. Watch for those fireworks next month.

The Reuters branch of the Obama media describes Kennedy’s appeal in their ‘Factbox‘ like this . . .

Under state law, Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick may not select a successor but must call a special election between 145 and 160 days after the seat becomes vacant.

Before his death, Kennedy asked that the law be changed so an interim senator could be appointed. The ailing statesman said in a letter to Patrick, a Democrat, that the state could not afford to be without a senator for five months.

Reuters must be so busy helping Obama push his plan, that they don’t bother to tell you why the Massachusetts law is the way it is. As a matter of ‘fact,’ the Governor used to be the one to pick a successor in the event of a vacancy until the year 2004. So what happened in 2004?

In 2004 Sen. John Kerry was making plans to be the next president. And in 2004 the Mass. governor was Mitt Romney (R). If Kerry was to win the election, Romney would in all likelihood have replaced a democratic senator with a republican one. And Sen. Kennedy would not have that. He appealed to the legislature to change the law to require an election, with plenty of time for campaigning, instead. Taking that responsibility away from the governor and putting it into the hands of the most liberal state in the country seemed like a guarantee that Kennedy could live with. No pun intended. And that’s what happened.

Fast forward to the present and the governor in the state house is a Democrat. Oh how easy it would be to just let him pick Kennedy’s successor. Darn. It’s that law getting in the way again. No problem, change the rules. The Lion in the Senate will just have his own law overturned and replaced with his latest version,  Gubernatorial Succession version 2.0.

The headline should be, Kennedy Wants To Overturn Himself, if Reuters had all their facts straight.

link: Factbox: Kennedy’s death raises successor speculation