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MA-Sen.: Kennedy Bill Advances; Focus Now on Successor



Legislators gathered in the Massachusetts state Capitol will decide the fate of the Senate appointment bill today. AP Photo

Updated, 3:25 p.m.
The Massachusetts Senate Tuesday approved a bill that would allow Gov. Deval Patrick (D) to name an interim replacement for the late Sen. Edward Kennedy. The bill has to go back to both chambers for procedural votes on Wednesday before heading to Patrick, who has said he would sign it.

Patrick's aides say they expect him to act quickly to name an interim successor, who would serve until voters pick a permanent replacement Jan. 19, and speculation is heating up about who the short-time Senator might be.

The two names that regularly come up in conversations with plugged-in Bay State operatives are former Gov. Michael Dukakis and Kennedy aide Paul Kirk.

Dukakis, who spent 12 years as the governor of Massachusetts, is the far more high-profile of the two men, having been the Democratic party's presidential nominee in 1988.

According to a source close to the deliberations, Dukakis is working hard to win the appointment as a sort of career-capper. Dukakis' quiet campaign for the seat got a major boost this morning from the Boston Globe editorial page who declared him the best choice for the appointment, adding:

"Dukakis, as a former Democratic presidential nominee, knows how politics works and can get his phone calls returned. He is far more likely to deliver tangible returns for Massachusetts residents than a career academic or anyone else who has never held elected office."

There are some in the state, however, who believe that Dukakis' high profile -- and the massive amount of national press his selection would bring -- is the exact opposite of what Patrick and the state legislature are aiming for.

After all, if the law is changed, it would mark the second time in the last five years the Democratic-controlled legislature had adjusted Senate succession. (In 2004, appointment power was taken from the governor due to fears that Mitt Romney would select a Republican if Sen. John Kerry was elected president.)

And, with a special election already ongoing to fill the remainder of Kennedy's term, there is little interest among the candidates seeking the office to be overshadowed for weeks by the interim pick.

If Dukakis is ultimately judged to be too high profile, then Kirk, who served as special assistant to Kennedy during much of the 1970s and went on to chair the Democratic National Committee in the 1980s, might be the preferred pick. (Kirk currently serves as the chairman of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation board of directors.)

Selecting Kirk as a caretaker would follow the blueprint of former Gov. Ruth Ann Minner (De.) who chose Ted Kaufman, a longtime aide to Sen. Joe Biden, to replace the Senator when he was elected vice president.

The only other name that is still being mentioned is that of Vicki Kennedy, the widow of the late Senator. She has given no indication that she is interested in serving in the Senate, however, and so we take her at her word.

Remember that the identity of the next Senator from Massachusetts depends entirely on one man: Patrick. Given the abundance of political problems facing Patrick as he prepares to seek a second term in 2010, the most likely pick is the one he and his inner circle believe will do no harm.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

By Chris Cillizza  |  September 22, 2009; 2:30 PM ET
Categories:  Senate  
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Comments

The people of Massachussetts have elected John Kerry, Ted Kennedy and Deval Patrick to high office, they already are a laughing stock.

==

You guys voted for *Sarah Palin*

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 23, 2009 8:17 PM | Report abuse

Democrats were for this before they were against it. Politician = prostitute

Posted by: GeneWells | September 23, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

Sportsfan2 wrote
"If this passes, the people of Massachusetts will be the laughing stock of the country. The legislature changes the rules to protect their own. People be damned."

The people of Massachussetts have elected John Kerry, Ted Kennedy and Deval Patrick to high office, they already are a laughing stock.

Posted by: pgp62 | September 23, 2009 1:58 PM | Report abuse

"Minority veto is getting a bad rep, from the GOP and from California. I say retire it."

I dislike it intensely, because it blurs accountability, which inevitably leads to incoherent and ineffective policy.

Posted by: nodebris | September 23, 2009 1:12 PM | Report abuse

JakeD

I am an independent who seeks decency, principles and good policy over partisan interests. Pols are elected to represent their constituents and to make good policy, not to lie, scheme, torpedo any progress and undermine or subvert our democratic process. And to understand that cooperation across party lines is necessary.
You also need to understand that you lose in elections when you fail to do these things. A winner and loser in each election is entirely part of the process. The current, leaderless GOP is the party of sore winners and sore losers, with no principles, and lies and subversion, always seeking power by sacrificing everything we hold dear - truth, facts, analysis, progress, stability, cooperation, etc.

Posted by: enough3 | September 23, 2009 12:53 PM | Report abuse

The (revised) law now being passed in Massachusetts should be enacted nationally as a constitutional amendment. This is the fairest way to fill senatorial vacancies, and perhaps also vacancies in the House.

Sure, it benefits the Democrats in this instance, but in other circumstances it could benefit Republicans. It should become national policy that when a Senate seat is vacated (either by death, disability, or appointment to some other office), the governor makes an intermin appointment from the departed senator's party, that a new election to fill out the remainer of the term be held within x days (maybe 120), and that the interim appointee be barred from being a candidate in that election. The only exception might be a vacancy that occurs with less than (say) two years to run of the departed senator's term; in that case the interim appointee would serve until the next general election, but would also be barred from being a candidate.

The same procedure could be used for House vacancies, although the problem there is less critical--a new general election will come up within less than two years.

The Blagojevich/Burris scandal and the troubles involved in filling the vacancies created when Joe Biden and Hillary Clinton ascended to higher offices would all have been avoided had such a constitutional procedure been in place. This solution avoids the problem of a governor giving an unfair advantage to an appointed (who could be the governor him/herself), and it gives would-be successors--and the voters--time to get ready for a real election to fill the vacancy democratically. It would also meant that a sitting senator from a state whose governor comes from the opposite party has a better chance of being considered for a cabinet position or a vice-presidential nomination, since the governor would be obliged to pick a successor from the outgoing senator's party.

Like I said, in this case the Democrats benefit. But given a different cast of political characters, the Republicans could also benefit down the road.

Posted by: jasm917 | September 23, 2009 12:52 PM | Report abuse

enough3:

If the tables were turned and this negatively impacted the Dems in the Senate, I'd bet you would be up in arms too.

Posted by: JakeD | September 23, 2009 12:30 PM | Report abuse

GOP complaints here are just more of the same hypocrisy that characterizes that band of loons: Sore winners and sore losers, and always complaining about some imagined injustice or immorality by Dems. The list of fornicators, adulterers, closeted self-hating gays, bribe takers, slimy pols, etc. in the GOP is just too much for words. Don't they ever have a chance to look in the mirror in self contemplation? It's an ugly picture...

Of course, there are similar types in all parties, but Democrats aren't so openly hypocritical. The GOP is an oozing open sore that needs to be lanced to let all its pus flow out and begin the process of rebuilding on principles, not the hate, fear, power and greed that currently constitute it modus operandi.

Go new Mass. Senator and work for real health care reform for people, not just health insurance reform for the companies, lobbyists and campaign coffers of pols!

Posted by: enough3 | September 23, 2009 11:44 AM | Report abuse

Oh and BTW sportsfan2, the title of "laughingstock of the country" has already been taken by Sarah Palin and the Tea Bagger Beckerheads.

Posted by: jaxas | September 23, 2009 10:10 AM | Report abuse

I would like to see the dems do more of this sort of thing. When the GOP has the power look what they do--they redistrict using legally questionable tactics to advantage themselves. They are hardly in a position to criticize the dems for using the same sort of tactics they used when they had the power.

I'm OK with it. Anything that keeps the Beckerheads from seizing power in this country is fine with me. That would be tantamount to having the Nazis in power!

Posted by: jaxas | September 23, 2009 10:07 AM | Report abuse

Oh stifle Thaddeus Stevens! When the GOP was in power they rewrote all of the redistricting laws to their own political advantage prompting some in the legal community to bring lawsuits charging them with criminality.

You might just as well accept it. Both political parties constantly change electoral laws to benefit their own party. It is moral conceit that prompts faux outrage such as you are demonstrating.

Posted by: jaxas | September 23, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

If this passes, the people of Massachusetts will be the laughing stock of the country. The legislature changes the rules to protect their own. People be damned.

Posted by: sportsfan2 | September 23, 2009 9:57 AM | Report abuse

I think this is a complete farce. Nothing like changing the law for convenience sake. When there is a discussion of stacking the deck, this is a perfect example. This is a move to force through Healthcare and Cap and Trade without forcing reconciliation. The 3 month window would force the Dems to use the reconciliation path for both measures. Although, the bills are being sold at the level of "snake oil" on the country's citizen's regardless of the fact.

I hope Michael Dukakis pulls up to the Capitol building in an M1 Abrams (another great photo op). I'd rather see Jon Lovitz portraying Michael Dukakis taking that Senate seat because it has been a joke for over 40 years.

Posted by: ThaddeusStevens | September 23, 2009 9:17 AM | Report abuse

Ted Kennedy Jr. will be appointed interim Senator for MA.

Posted by: dtyreex | September 23, 2009 8:59 AM | Report abuse

There is missing info here -- when the law was changed Romney could have appointed someone for the rest of the term -- the new law makes it that the appointment is interim until a special election is held -- which will happen in 3 months.....

Posted by: markmalbo | September 23, 2009 8:23 AM | Report abuse

Mike Dukakis is still alive? I wonder if the new health plan refuses to treat elderly patients with chronic alcoholism. Might be tough decisions to make with the wife. I'm betting Kitty gets her liver. One for one and all can go to he//.

Posted by: nobama2012 | September 23, 2009 7:39 AM | Report abuse

If this isn't a new level of arrogance, I don't know what is. Let's see. Does the bill say that the governor has to install a senator of the same party?

If the people elected a Republican governor, at the time Romney, why take away his ability to express the will of the people that elected him?

Now that there is a Democratic governor, Democrats gave him the power to express the will of the people? Strange bit of double standard.

But, hey, without double standards, Democrats would have no standards at all.

Posted by: thelaw1 | September 23, 2009 6:39 AM | Report abuse

I cant believe Democrats would have the temerity to pull something like this.


Amazing, but I have to give it to the Polit Bureau in Massachusetts better known as the Democratic party, they do have Cojones. Big ones the British call Bollocks, we know em as Testicles. In fact I'm going to promote them, from now on I will give Massachusetts legislators the honorific of E.T. That is of course as Cheech and Chong so eloquently put it...the Extra Testicle. So from now on ad infinitum these odd fellows will be in fact the Extra Testicle.

Posted by: Homunculus | September 23, 2009 3:18 AM | Report abuse

great news... to ponder a Dukakis as a Senator. I guy who has been through what he has and kept it together has got to come off the bench with fresh legs. As for JakeD's question as to why Romney could not be trusted... well for me it would be the magic underwear and believing in such a wacky religion.

Posted by: angriestdogintheworld | September 23, 2009 2:21 AM | Report abuse

I think the dramatic growth of filibusters, under both parties, endangers both the filibuster and effective governance. I think it would have been quite interesting had the nuclear options (sorry, the constitutional option) been invoked in the 05-06 Senate. Once the buck is broken, it will stay broken.

As for rights of the minorities, protecting those is the province of the courts. Today's Senate seems more reminiscent of the House of 20 years ago. May as well have the same kinds of rules.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | September 23, 2009 1:51 AM | Report abuse

that's very commendable of you. attaboy.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 23, 2009 1:27 AM | Report abuse

Regardless, I backed up my argument with cites; you did not.

Posted by: JakeD | September 23, 2009 1:04 AM | Report abuse

It just so happens that Kennedy passed away at a critical time in the legislative calendar. So, the rules of the game are being tweaked again. This is almost as bad as the constant tinkering with the rules in the NFL.

==

heh heh heh

==

"Greater than the threa[t] of a 60th vote is reconciliation. I suspect that the filibuster is on life support."

I hope you're right about that.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 23, 2009 1:00 AM | Report abuse

Even more hypocritical, GoldAndTanzanite was on the thread I linked to below complaining that I didn't cite to my arguments, so I provided SIX cites. There's no point trying to reason with him.

==

You posted some buffoonery about the earth being able to hold as many people as can fit. Some idiot dividing the land mass by the number of people and saying "room for lots more."

Maybe you can support as many people as can fit like sardines in cans by asking God to do some of that supernatural erosion?

And you claim a graduate degree. When I was growing up any twelve year old kid was more scientifically literate than you.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 23, 2009 12:54 AM | Report abuse

It sucks because I think the filibuster is a useful protection for the minority, but the Republicans have just abused it so badly that I think it needs to go. The harm has outweighed the good now that EVERY vote needs a supermajority to pass

==

Minority veto is getting a bad rep, from the GOP and from California. I say retire it.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 23, 2009 12:48 AM | Report abuse

GoldAndTanzanite, is it your opinion that footnotes are an onerous addition to the burdens already placed on overworked undergraduates who are already busy partying?

==

(sigh)

we're not doing thesis papers here. GET a GRIP.

I saw the man on TV, heard his voice, if that tarnishes your golden idol well you'll just have to work out a way to deal with it. Don't give a hoot if you would prefer to think I'm lying. Go ahead. I saw a thing on Hastert shortly after he resigned, pointed out what a doggishly eager little Bush enabler he'd been when the GOP had both houses. Attaboy, Denny.

Fetch.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 23, 2009 12:45 AM | Report abuse

douglaslbarber:

Even more hypocritical, GoldAndTanzanite was on the thread I linked to below complaining that I didn't cite to my arguments, so I provided SIX cites. There's no point trying to reason with him.

Posted by: JakeD | September 23, 2009 12:34 AM | Report abuse

"Greater than the thread of a 60th vote is reconciliation. I suspect that the filibuster is on life support.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade"

It sucks because I think the filibuster is a useful protection for the minority, but the Republicans have just abused it so badly that I think it needs to go. The harm has outweighed the good now that EVERY vote needs a supermajority to pass.

Posted by: DDAWD | September 23, 2009 12:29 AM | Report abuse

I disagree somewhat with the characterization of this as hypocritical. It is anything but. The legislature stripped the power of Romney to appoint a Republican replacement for Kerry (I'm fairly sure that would have been for up to 2 years, not the full term). Instead, a snap election is held. It just so happens that Kennedy passed away at a critical time in the legislative calendar. So, the rules of the game are being tweaked again. This is almost as bad as the constant tinkering with the rules in the NFL.

Greater than the thread of a 60th vote is reconciliation. I suspect that the filibuster is on life support.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | September 23, 2009 12:12 AM | Report abuse

GoldAndTanzanite, is it your opinion that footnotes are an onerous addition to the burdens already placed on overworked undergraduates who are already busy partying?

If not, how do you explain your posts?

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 23, 2009 12:07 AM | Report abuse

GoldAndTanzanite wrote, "Dig up your own link, I'm not chasing my tail for you."

Hmm. Can't answer an argument. OK.

Wouldn't want you to have to "chase your tail" in order to answer an intelligent argument. That would be an effort that was just uncalled for from a person who was born entitled to self-respect.

What a laugh.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 11:59 PM | Report abuse

I guess English isn't your native tongue. I didn't say Hastert was apoplectic, I said he was boorish.

I didn't see it on YouTube I saw it on C-Span. Dig up your own link, I'm not chasing my tail for you.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 11:41 PM | Report abuse

I'm waiting for the apoplectic Hastert link from the guy who asserts that Hastert was an author of political incivility.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 11:37 PM | Report abuse

"get in line in that procesional
step into that small confessional
there the guy who's got religion'll
tell you if your sin's original

if it is try playin' it safer
drink the wine and chew the wafer
two, four, six, eigtht
time to transubstantiate!"
-- Tom Lehrer

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 11:30 PM | Report abuse

Not being a big fan of founder George Wallace, I can't say that I'm impressed by the credential.

==

Don't worry there's no truth to it

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 11:21 PM | Report abuse

GoldAndTanzanite wrote, "I've heard seen videos of Hastert shouting down Democrats, with Republicans smirking about it."

How about you lay one on us?

I guess maybe I was name-dropping when I intimated that I knew a student of his who turned out to be a stand-up guy. I'll be back just as soon as I can from the confessional. Meanwhile, how about you put a link where your mouth is?

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 11:21 PM | Report abuse

I'd like to know what "creepy" means. I guess it's a strong emotional expression of dislike.

==

Tell me what your native language is and I will translate for you.

Where I'm moving to it's "sởn gáy"

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 11:19 PM | Report abuse

I've heard seen videos of Hastert shouting down Democrats, with Republicans smirking about it.

You knew someone who he coached. Why is that even remotely relevant? Sounds like lame name-dropping to me.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 11:13 PM | Report abuse

JakeD wrote, "douglaslbarber:

You forget that I am a registered member of the American Independent Party, so anything bad that Tom DeLay or other Republicans did is still bad in my view -- I call them like I see them -- hopefully, some of hypocrites from BOTH parties get their just desserts. "

---------------

Not being a big fan of founder George Wallace, I can't say that I'm impressed by the credential.

I can say that any friend of life is, and will remain, a friend of mine.

Also, politics is fun, and I love a good argument.

Be well ;)

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 11:10 PM | Report abuse

Is it "creepy" if a strong supporter of national health care says, "unwarranted attacks on Dennis Hastert are a bad thing"?

I'd like to know what "creepy" means. I guess it's a strong emotional expression of dislike.

No problem.

I worked with a young guy with a ring through his nose and orange hair who had been a student of Hastert's in high school, and played on the basketball team.

This guy I worked with carried more than his share of the load at work, and understood the intricacies of a telecommunications switching device, which is more complicated than I can grasp.

I'm glad I had a chance to know someone who had been a high school student of Dennis Hastert - and proud to have worked alongside him.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 11:03 PM | Report abuse

douglaslbarber:

You forget that I am a registered member of the American Independent Party, so anything bad that Tom DeLay or other Republicans did is still bad in my view -- I call them like I see them -- hopefully, some of hypocrites from BOTH parties get their just desserts.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 10:59 PM | Report abuse

Well Hastert's idea of the rules of order led him to do a lot of yelling and as for his departure I believe he resigned in 2007 when the GOP got their comeuppance in 2006.

He was uncouth and boorish. Stop editing your recollections, it's really creepy.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 10:48 PM | Report abuse

GoldAndTanzanite wrote, "Remember Dennis Hastert shouting down Democrats?"

Actually, I don't. My recollection is that he was a fairly mild-mannered former high school teacher and basketball coach who always seemed a bit uncomfortable in the political leadership role, and finally decided that it wasn't worth his time.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 10:42 PM | Report abuse

Anyone remember how Republicans behaved when they had the House and Senate? Were they scrupulous, bipartisan, or did they ridicule and isolate and marginalize Democrats. Dollars to Navy beans the same people who're wringing handkerchiefs about the MA law that would have prevented Romney from replacing an elected Democrat with some Republican of his own chooseing were high-fiving each other and crowing with delight every time the GOP played the bully before 2006.

Remember Dennis Hastert shouting down Democrats?

Cry me a river for the poor downtrodden GOP. Oh it's so *unfair,* I want my country back!

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 10:19 PM | Report abuse

JakeD wrote, "Federalist 10 warned of political factions, as did Geo. Washington. We should hold our politicians to higher, not lower, standards."

Would you, in all honesty, hold Tom Delay to those standards, were he to muck about in Texas redistricting?

Those founders dreaded the spirit of party, which I'm afraid we've all succumbed to today. It's almost like a nuclear arms race. I can't put down my party factionalism unless I can be sure you will put down yours. Know what I mean? The first one to do the right thing will be at a disadvantage to the first one who takes advantage.

I wish it weren't so, but then again, I wish people weren't selfish, and I am not holding my breath waiting for that wish to be realized by me or anyone else.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 9:54 PM | Report abuse

Bad ECT this morning, zouk?

Don't worry, you won't miss all those memories.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 9:39 PM | Report abuse

Spoke too soon. Must be time for recess. Cookies and milk for the inmates.

Posted by: snowbama | September 22, 2009 9:26 PM | Report abuse

You know where you can stick that religious BS

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite

one pathetic creatures entire motivation centers around a single activity. It is a high traffic area for this loser.

Posted by: snowbama | September 22, 2009 9:22 PM | Report abuse

On the other hand, Washington, Jefferson, Adams, Madison, Jay, Hamilton...there's not an infallible man among them, nor are they collectively infallible.

They are, I'd guess, wiser than any bunch we could gather today to revise their work.

==

We're wiser than they were.

For starters, we don't own slaves and we let women vote. We don't execute people for missing church anymore, either.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 9:21 PM | Report abuse

Those pesky semi colons have the quiff pinned down today and drindl is in solitary. The result is that this blog is unusually refreshing and intelligent.

Posted by: snowbama | September 22, 2009 9:12 PM | Report abuse

So 40 years after the availability of birth control pills the US population has fallen to a few dozen million and the average age is now 64.

Oh, wait, it hasn't, we actually have closer to a hundred million MORE people and childbirth hospitals are as crowded as ever.

But at least before The Pill adolescents NEVER had sex.

Oh, wait, yes they did, and they bore a lot of children.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 9:00 PM | Report abuse

Federalist 10 warned of political factions, as did Geo. Washington. We should hold our politicians to higher, not lower, standards. At least I would "feel" better if those Mass. legislators who were around five years ago admitted that their prior vote was completely political, a mistake they intend to correct, and was NOT in the best interests of all the People.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 8:59 PM | Report abuse

As far as the parameters within which we process variety meats are concerned, I think risejugger has the most telling point.

Our most fundamental law, our constitution, has left sausage-making to the democratic process. That would be a process in which the authors of the Federalist Papers, to name a few authors of the constitution, expected self-serving and hypocrisy to play powerful roles.

There's little to be said in favor of the sorts of variety meats democracy serves up, except that smart people who'd dined on the alternatives (centuries long wars of religion, monarchy, aristocracy) for generations chose to eat them.

On the other hand, Washington, Jefferson, Adams, Madison, Jay, Hamilton...there's not an infallible man among them, nor are they collectively infallible.

They are, I'd guess, wiser than any bunch we could gather today to revise their work.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 8:43 PM | Report abuse

You're welcome.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 8:37 PM | Report abuse

Thank you for your 8P post, Jake. It was in no way required [as no response is ever required here and you thought I ought to have read the "thesis"] so I appreciate the effort all the more.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | September 22, 2009 8:31 PM | Report abuse

Not to me ; )

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 8:28 PM | Report abuse

JakeD asked if I saw his questions to mwallace8831 and fairfaxvoter.

I did. I read through all the comments and find all of yours reasonable.

"if the tables were turned and this negatively impacted the Dems, I'd bet you would be up in arms too."

That's the point of your argument, as I understand it, and I think it's an unassailable point.

Of course, I also believe that abortion is most often murder of the politically powerless for the convenience of those big and strong enough to defend themselves, so my views are, to most minds in the USA, very suspect.

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 8:26 PM | Report abuse

risejugger:

Care to answer my questions then?

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 8:21 PM | Report abuse

This manipulation of laws to satisfy the democrat party - Not America or the State of Massachusetts - is pathetic!

The Democrats think they have rights above and beyond the U.S. Constitution.
------------------
What part of the Constitution are you referring to? Last time I checked, state legislatures have the authority to pass laws that affect their state. That includes the power to amend their laws, suspend their laws, or repeal their laws. What does that have to do with the constitution?

Posted by: risejugger | September 22, 2009 8:18 PM | Report abuse

Here they are, one last time:

1) Are you similarly "concerned" about the current Presidential Succession statute (3 U.S.C. § 19) which allows for a (God forbid) REPUBLICAN to take over if something happened to the first five people in line?

2) Or, given Sen. Byrd (D-WV) going back into the hospital today, what about if something happened to Obama, Biden, AND Pelosi?

3) If the law had been changed in 2004 to require then-Gov. Romney to appoint an interim Senator from the same party as the vacating Senator (Kerry in that case), would that have been OK with you?

4) Assuming that Curt Schilling runs and wins this Senate seat and something should happen to him, you are OK with Gov. Patrick being forced to do the same (or would you try to change the law yet again)?

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 8:07 PM | Report abuse

Hi, douglaslbarber. Did you see my questions to mwallace8831 and fairfaxvoter?

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 8:02 PM | Report abuse

mark_in_austin:

QUESTION: Is the pill a bad thing? Is birth control bad/ Why?

ANSWER: The Pill is a "bad" thing because 1) it gives a false sense of security and control, 2) it can cause side effects like breast cancer and abortions, 3) it can cause under-age sexual promiscuity, and most importantly, 4) society needs children for civilization to continue, with the minimum replacement rate being the average number of 2.1 babies being born to each woman ...

(see link to thread below)

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Of course JakeD is correct - as he often is - to point out that this is a crass and hypocritical move by Massachusetts Dems who now reverse a law they passed to prevent a Republican governor from appointing a Republican senator.

I guess where I differ from Jake - aside from my interest as a Democrat in seeing this crass and hypocritical move succeed - is in seeing this as the way politics works. It's perfectly ordinary.

If you like sausage, don't watch it being made, and if you like democracy, don't look too closely at its inner workings.

Jake quotes the MA Repub party as saying "It's official. The political process has reached a new low today. This is a stunning example of Democrat hypocrisy, where one party changes the law for purely self-serving interests in order to keep themselves in power. Our political process should have no place for this type of blatant abuse...."

There's a good point there, but calling it a "new low" probably over-states the case. Redistricting and variety meat processing of that sort has always been a business lacking in aesthetic appeal. This instance seems to me to fall into that category of crassly self-interested, unapologetically hypocritical political acts by means of which majorities rule.

Does this sort of thing tend to undermine the peoples' respect for democracy?

I'd guess so. The problem with trying to squeeze shenanigans like this out of the system is that *both* parties are addicted to them.

Greetings Jake :)

Posted by: douglaslbarber | September 22, 2009 7:59 PM | Report abuse

You know where you can stick that religious BS

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Well, a practical problem for Mike Dukakis is that he didn't back Deval Patrick for Governor when it mattered. Just as Tip O'Neill often said, Massachusetts politics is as local as it is anywhere. So grand theorizing is about as useful as a hamper full of laundry.

Posted by: AppDev | September 22, 2009 7:53 PM | Report abuse

And you, Chris Fox, are a precious human being created in God's image, for whom Jesus Christ died so that you might have eternal life.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:48 PM | Report abuse

That was neither indiscriminate nor for absolutely no reason.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:46 PM | Report abuse

You're one seriously sick creep, Jake.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 7:45 PM | Report abuse

I'm praying he doesn't survive the anesthesia.

Posted by: JakeD

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 7:44 PM | Report abuse

mwallace8831 and fairfaxvoter:

If the law had been changed in 2004 to require then-Gov. Romney to appoint an interim Senator from the same party as the vacating Senator (Kerry in that case), would that have been OK with you? Assuming that Curt Schilling runs and wins this Senate seat and something should happen to him, you are OK with Gov. Patrick being forced to do the same (or would you try to change the law yet again)?

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:43 PM | Report abuse

For the record, I do not "rejoice" -- that was sarcasm -- nor do I indiscriminately wishes for people to die for absolutely no reason.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:39 PM | Report abuse

"was" = "wasn't" (darn Spellchecker ; )

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:37 PM | Report abuse

There's only one kind of person in this world so desperate for attention that he rejoices in being hated.

And it's not the kind of person who has any friends.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 7:36 PM | Report abuse

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:36 PM | Report abuse

EddietheInfidel:

What is "worse" is that Sen. Kennedy was casting votes at all for some time now.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:35 PM | Report abuse

MikeInMidland -

Four states – Arizona, Hawaii, Utah, and Wyoming – require the appointee to hail from the same political party as the vacating senator.

I do not believe there is a federal constitutional issue here. Were you referring to the MA Constitution?

Posted by: mark_in_austin | September 22, 2009 7:32 PM | Report abuse

I'm from what one of the previous posters referred to as the "elevated" state of NJ, and quite frankly I don't care what the Massachussets legislature decides to do about this issue.

As is usually the case with politicians of any ilk, when the rules in place don't fit their view of how things should work, they will conveniently change them so they do.

For all his failings, the people of MA continued to re-elect Ted Kennedy as their Senator for over 40 years; whom ever is appointed in an interim capacity couldn't be any worse, and I certainly wouldn't have expected a (gasp) Republican to be chosen to fill his seat.

To those that worry about the Democratic majority in Congress I say: the "Liberal Lion" is gone; perhaps we'll get a kitten to replace him until the special election takes place.

Posted by: EddietheInfidel | September 22, 2009 7:30 PM | Report abuse

Oh, goodie, now even DDAWD ain't ignoring me; what a joy!

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:24 PM | Report abuse

"Just go read how well troll-boi acquitted himself in the McDonnell "Most Important Number" thread.

It's a riot.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite"

There's no acquitting. The guy indiscriminately wishes for people to die for absolutely no reason. That's how his parents raised him and that's who he is. It's cute since he's too gutless to do it, but it's amazing how many people he would slaughter without a second thought if he knew he could get away with it. That's the mindset. Death, death, kill, kill. Kind of makes the overt racism seem like a minor sin, haha.

Posted by: DDAWD | September 22, 2009 7:22 PM | Report abuse

mikeinmidland:

Given all the talk about Obamacare and preventing filibusters, somehow if the tables were turned and this negatively impacted the Dems, I'd bet you would be up in arms too.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:20 PM | Report abuse

Shucky dern they should appoint someone that can run for the seat, so they have a leg up on the republican that runs.

Democrats need to learn some lessons from republicans on hardball politics.

Posted by: ORNOT | September 22, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse

At least YOU are not ignoring me anymore ; )

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Quit begging for attention it's sickening. Get a dog or something.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 7:14 PM | Report abuse

JohnGalt,

How is that corruption? These state legislators were elected. They are acting in the interest of their party, and (they would claim) in the interest of their constituents. Mass already has health care reform, and that's really what we're talking about here--a 60th Dem vote for health care between now and Jan. 19.

Get a grip.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | September 22, 2009 7:12 PM | Report abuse

Just go read how well troll-boi acquitted himself in the McDonnell "Most Important Number" thread.

It's a riot.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 7:10 PM | Report abuse

mwallace8831 and fairfaxvoter:

Did you see my questions to you?

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 7:10 PM | Report abuse

The corruption festival controlled by the Kennedy's continues in Massachusetts. If the law works against your political interests, change it. If the new law did not work out for you, change it again. Corruption on the open and publicly. The people of Massachusetts condone it and participate on it by their electoral process. It is the people that are corrupt; the politicians just do what they got elected to do in the first place.

Posted by: JohnGalt9 | September 22, 2009 7:05 PM | Report abuse

"The fact that you can even think of such stuff sickens me. Couldn't you at least pretend to care about this country and put a little "God forbid" in that sentence about something happening to Obama, Biden, and Pelosi? Of course not. Because you don't care about this country, only about your agenda.

Posted by: yeswiican "

Great, now he's going to pray for your death. Especially now that he's been emboldened after seeing that his prayers managed to kill off that Yale grad student.

Posted by: DDAWD | September 22, 2009 7:03 PM | Report abuse

JakeD:

If the Secretary of State (or the Secretary of Defense, for that matter) had to assume the Presidency, that would mean a whole world of hurt had rained down on Washington. Do you really think that any sane American would care that it was Hillary Clinton, or Gates in the White House in such a scenario?

The fact that you can even think of such stuff sickens me. Couldn't you at least pretend to care about this country and put a little "God forbid" in that sentence about something happening to Obama, Biden, and Pelosi? Of course not. Because you don't care about this country, only about your agenda.

Posted by: yeswiican | September 22, 2009 6:46 PM | Report abuse

The GOP Apologist Road Show is, quite simply, the longest running comedy act in the country. Recall the Majority Whip of the U.S. House of Representatives enlisting the FAA and Homeland Security to track down Texas STATE legislators and drag them back to Austin so the Republican majority in that STATE legislature could redistrict for the next Congressional elections and increase the GOP majority in the House. And the GOPers are whining because the state legislature in Massachusets is exercising its right to enact laws? This is freaking hysterical!

Posted by: 33rdStreet | September 22, 2009 6:45 PM | Report abuse

The Mass senate has voted, and tomorrow it goes back for some procedural votes, and then Patrick can sign it and appoint an interim Senator. Cry me a river, people. All this talk about precedents and fairness. You know damn well the GOP would have done the same thing.

You can squawk all you want but the Mass congress has done what it considered its duty to the voters of Mass. If those voters don't like it, they can vote out all those Dems in the next election--that should make you happy!

Posted by: yeswiican | September 22, 2009 6:38 PM | Report abuse


"She [Vicki Kenedy] has given no indication that she is interested in serving in the Senate, however, and so we take her at her word."

No indication is no indication. No indication is not an indication of disinterest in the U. S. Senator or in serving Massachusetts.

Her word? How could no indication morph into an honorable commitment to not accept the appointment? See this is the sort of thing that happens when you listen too much to Boston crowd (the political geniuses of the universe (except when it comes to winning elections)).

Posted by: blasmaic | September 22, 2009 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Or, given Sen. Byrd (D-WV) going back into the hospital today, what about if something happened to Obama, Biden, AND Pelosi?

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 6:29 PM | Report abuse

mwallace8831 and fairfaxvoter:

Are you similarly "concerned" about the current Presidential Succession statute (3 U.S.C. § 19) which allows for a (God forbid) REPUBLICAN to take over if something happened to the first five people in line? Given all the talk about Obamacare and preventing filibusters, somehow if the tables were turned and this negatively impacted the Dems, I'd bet you would be up in arms too.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 6:26 PM | Report abuse

Actually, the same party as the previous incumbent is being used in several states now. I don't think the balance of power should change because of an opening of a senate seat. I also think we need a uniform way of selecting senators because there should be a consistent method across the board. I agree that there should be a special election to fill a spot-whether it be immediately or 120 days-you can fill in the details for that.

Now for those who say this is amending and not changing the process-appointing a senator to fill the seat is CHANGING the rule not amending the rule. Changing the time frame for a special election from 120 days to 60 days would be amending, but the actual appointment to the open seat is more than just a small amendment. The fact that the democrats have done this twice in five years for purely partisan reasons is hypocritical. For Goldie, yes what Tom Delay was purely political as well, and Texas has benefited with a delegation that matches the state's electorate, BUT it was purely political and there was some blowback for it. The difference here is I acknowledge that it was purely partisan, you are still hiding behind excuses to defend the inexcusable. New Jersey is another great example of democrats manipulating, and even breaking the election law-the judge even acknowledged it but said the voters have to have a choice. Yes I find the democrats being extremely hypocritical, but like that say 'pride goes before the fall' and I think Mr Reid is seeing the tea leaves in his own re-election too

Posted by: TexasProud1 | September 22, 2009 6:17 PM | Report abuse

As it was said during the 2004 elections (by another DEMOCRAT from MA).. John Kerry was for it before he was opposed to it..

Posted by: philly3 | September 22, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse


-------------------------------------------

Just wait till the 2012 general prez election when we'll be able to say that Mitt Romney was FOR abortion before he was against it.

That's gonna fun.....................

Posted by: htruman1 | September 22, 2009 6:16 PM | Report abuse

I assume now that democracy is defined not by a certain set of rules, laws, precedents (democrats were very adamant about precedents when they queried the supreme court nominees),etc., but, by the changing positions of the DEMOCRATIC party. As it was said during the 2004 elections (by another DEMOCRAT from MA).. John Kerry was for it before he was opposed to it..

Posted by: philly3 | September 22, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

fairfax, I agree with you, except the bit about "same party" is hard to write constitutionally. Which is why they voted down that part in MA in 2004.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | September 22, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

This manipulation of laws to satisfy the democrat party - Not America or the State of Massachusetts - is pathetic!

The Democrats think they have rights above and beyond the U.S. Constitution.

Posted by: jjcrocket2 | September 22, 2009 5:55 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and if you haven't heard, Byrd is in the hospital. Again. Another infection, sounds more minor this time but who knows. I hope he'll be ok.

FYI, WV gov is a D, and would appoint until 2010 election cycle. Byrd's term ends in 2012.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | September 22, 2009 5:53 PM | Report abuse

Voice in the wilderness here, but in the case of all Senate vacancie, I think we should have a uniform system in all the states of an immediate special election with an interim short-term appointment, and a requirement that the governor, regardless of party, make that interim appointment from the same party as the previous holder of the seat.

Immediate special election means a timing much like that now in Massachusetts, to limit the power of the governor's appointment simply to a short-term placeholder, yet allow some time for candidates to declare and campaign. The use of such an election respects the power and authority of the voters, just as in a House seat that needs refilling.

Short-term placeholder is appropriate so the seat doesn't stay empty in the meantime and the state has full representation. In most states, this vacancy is more important than a single House vacancy, which is usually one of a number of House seats for that state.

And designating the party of the appointed placeholder makes sense because it honors the will of the voters who elected the previous seat holder. For example, the voters of Massachusetts obviously voted to have a Democratic Senator in both Kerry and Kennedy. The appointee to replace either one should have been and should be a Democrat. This cross-party game with governors appointing someone of a different party thwarts the will of the voters.

I would say the same in a state where a Republican Senator stepped down and the governor was a Democrat -- the appointee there should be a Republican. I vaguely recall this almost came up with Judd Gregg and was to be resolved along those lines.

The one situation this doesn't cover is a protracted recount, as we saw in Minnesota. I think we're stuck with a vacancy in that case since it's unclear throughout the process how long it will take, and since we can't respect the will of the voters by appointing someone "of the same party" as the victor, if we don't know the victor.

Maybe it's unconstitutional to impose this plan but isn't there such a thing as a "model" law that states almost uniformly adopt? This would be my recommendation for such a law.

Posted by: fairfaxvoter | September 22, 2009 5:51 PM | Report abuse

The people of Massachusetts who favor changing the law for this purpose are elevating themselves to the level of the fine people of New Jersey.

Posted by: raym39 | September 22, 2009 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Hey, Texasproud, you do realize that they are NOT reversing the 2004 law. Don't you? If it helps, read the article.

If they pass the AMENDMENT then there will be a temporary Senator for 4 months. As a practical matter, they can't legislate that the appointee is of a particular party, or force the appointee not to run for the seat. But Patrick is not going to appoint Coakley or anyone else running, and Dukakis isn't going to suddenly throw his name in the hat if appointed.

Yeah, it's political. And if the GOP hadn't been playing political games with health care all summer, then maybe it wouldn't be a big deal, and we could wait 4 months to get the 100th Senator. But as it is, we'll need him.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | September 22, 2009 5:36 PM | Report abuse

The law was different five years ago. If Kerry had won the presidency, Romney would not have named an interim Senator; his pick would have served out the Senate term. (And personally, no, I would not have trusted Romney to appoint a Dem. of the same political persuasion to fill the seat).

I do have a problem with this, just as I did when Tim Johnson, a Dem. from SD (IIRC) fell seriously ill when the senate was closely divided. Had he died or resigned, the SD gov. of the opposing party would have been able to name his successor. I think that's just wrong, no matter which party benefits. The governor of a state should not be able to disrupt the balance of power in the Senate.

There was talk of having a provision to this effect in the Mass. law, but I don't know if it made it into the final.

JakeD said:
So, why couldn't Gov. Romney be trusted to appoint an interim Senator just five short years ago?

and

So, it would have been OK if Gov. Romney had promised to appoint a Democrat?

Posted by: mwallace8831 | September 22, 2009 5:35 PM | Report abuse

Way to dodge the question, "Texas."

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 5:25 PM | Report abuse

Wow what is it with Republicans and all this whining? Don't they have any real work to do? All we ever hear from them is crying.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

"You might also remember that Tom Delay ended up getting booted from office for it (and a few others)."

Um, no. Not even close. he was criticized for it, but this has nothing to do with why he is on reality TV today.

Posted by: DDAWD | September 22, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

Democrats, with Robert Byrd able to make it for a vote, would have their full 60 votes in the Senate, enough to ward off a filibuster and pass Health Care reform without a Republican vote.

Posted by: sfcpoll | September 22, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

The Massachusetts Republican Party today responded to the State Senate's passage of a bill granting Governor Deval Patrick the authority to appoint an interim U.S. Senator. Chairman Jennifer Nassour released the following statement:

"It's official. The political process has reached a new low today. This is a stunning example of Democrat hypocrisy, where one party changes the law for purely self-serving interests in order to keep themselves in power. Our political process should have no place for this type of blatant abuse, and the Democrats' irresponsible actions are a sharp mandate for political change in Massachusetts.

This is a pathetic attempt by the Obama Administration to stack the deck in the U.S. Senate and pass an unpopular government-run health care plan that the American people simply oppose."

NOTE: In an affront to transparency, Democrats rejected an amendment offered by Republicans calling for all communications from the Governor on the interim appointment to be made a matter of public record.

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 5:22 PM | Report abuse

So the justification being used is that because Texas did their redistricting in '04 therefore you are justified in reversing what is going on in Massachusetts. I guess, assuming you believe the re-districting was improper, that two wrongs make a right? You might also remember that Tom Delay ended up getting booted from office for it (and a few others). The point is that the electorate doesn't like purely partisan rules changes, even if it benefits the party that reflects the electorate. I have no doubt that a democrat will win the MA senate seat. The point is that you made a change in '04 for purely political purposes, and now are reversing it for purely political purposes. I guess that would be MA DEM 2-TX GOP 1. And if you want to use other states as precidents, you can bring back the Torch in the NJ Senate race in 2002, brazingly breaking the law because he knew he couldn't win and even stated so so that the democratic party could handpick his replacement. The democrats even sued to force Tom Delay's name be on the ballot in '06 for THE EXACT SAME THING! Please drop the tit for tat approach-just admit it is hypocritical politics and move on-the senate makeup wasn't going to change-you just got caught making up the rules as you went along

Posted by: TexasProud1 | September 22, 2009 5:14 PM | Report abuse

mwallace8831:

So, it would have been OK if Gov. Romney had promised to appoint a Democrat?

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse

ROFLMA! Ted Kennedy's got a big smile on his face wherever he is. Mc Connell, DeMint, Sesseions, Chambliss and the rest of the "Confederate Hee-Haw" brigade have a big problem.

Better lock up Olympia Snowe guys and perhaps Susan Collins as well. Also, might be a good idea to keep a close eye on Senator Byrd's health.

Constitutional question. While realizing that the Vice-President can cast a tie breaking vote on legislation, can he vote for "closure" and stop a fillibuster? Let's go folks and get that public option ready.

Posted by: NotBubba | September 22, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Why would anyone vote for or appoint an America-hating Republic Party of No person to the seat?

I mean, we already know they're traitors - and they're likely to betray America at the drop of a corporate contribution.

Posted by: WillSeattle | September 22, 2009 4:55 PM | Report abuse

Let's appoint the First Lady Obama. We know she's going to run for the Presidency one day, so why not give her a leg up now and spare her the fortune she may have to spend when she runs for a US Senator seat.

Posted by: philhwee | September 22, 2009 4:52 PM | Report abuse

I see sno-clue is back at it. Welcome back, king_of_puke!

Posted by: jasperanselm | September 22, 2009 4:48 PM | Report abuse

Earth to sovine08 . . . Hello, I am a Massachusetts voter, and yes, we have voted in two Dems. as our senators for many, many years now. Voted . . . in elections. . .This is not a political conspiracy; it is an easily documented fact. What is your point?

"BTW YOU want 2 Dems serving you in the Senate.. doesn't mean the voters want two Dems that is what elections are for. Many solid Blue and Red states have a senator from EACH party. And IF the situation was reversed perhaps Repubs would do the same thing that doesn't mean it's fair or right. Besides then it would be Dems acting like Repubs are now calling the party in charge hypocrites!"

Posted by: mwallace8831 | September 22, 2009 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Republicans had the White House, Senate, Congress, and Court for years and all they did was get us into wars, trash the economy, and address such pivotal national issues as gay adoption and Terry Shiavo's feeding tube.

Now they're on the outs and they're whining and weeping about unfairness.

Cry me a god damn river.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

Political? Sure. Hypocritical? I keep hearing this charge, but I don't get it. How is it hypocritical? We want two Dems representing us in the Senate. Dems outnumber Repubs by huge margins in the Mass. House and Senate - is there any doubt that if the situation were reversed, Republicans wouldn't be using their majority to ensure their interests were being served?
Posted by: mwallace8831
______
It's hypocritical because Dems believe there should be one set of rules when a Republican is Governor and another when it is a Democrat. So can we assume if a Republican defeats Deval next time The Dems will change the rules back again???
BTW YOU want 2 Dems serving you in the Senate.. doesn't mean the voters want two Dems that is what elections are for. Many solid Blue and Red states have a senator from EACH party. And IF the situation was reversed perhaps Repubs would do the same thing that doesn't mean it's fair or right. Besides then it would be Dems acting like Repubs are now calling the party in charge hypocrites!

Posted by: sovine08 | September 22, 2009 4:34 PM | Report abuse

When will the tedious, empty retort of "Bush did it" end for the adolescent Democrats?

I think maybe the Lindburgh baby case may finally be near solution.

Posted by: snowbama | September 22, 2009 4:22 PM | Report abuse

I guess political hypocrisy is acceptable. If it wasn't acceptable for Gov Romney in 2004, how is it appropriate for Gov Patrick?

Posted by: TexasProud1

I guess this Texas hypocrite is choosing not to remember how the republicans in Texas decided is was OK to re-draw congressional districts (between census') when Tom Delay told them to.

Posted by: jasperanselm | September 22, 2009 4:18 PM | Report abuse

The Republicans are absolutely right to cry hypocrisy, but I still believe that changing the law now is the correct decision. It only makes sense that a governor be allowed to appoint a temporary representative to fill vacant seats like this one to ensure a continuity of representation. The move to deny Governor Romney that power in 2004 was craven and a disservice to the state of Massachusetts. The current moves to reverse that mistake and are in the best interests of the state.

I sympathize with the Republicans who are clearly being ill-treated here; I wish for the sake of justice that Gov. Patrick could be persuaded to appoint a Republican as a temporary replacement. But more important than any partisan advantage is the need for Massachusetts to be fully represented during this critical time.

Posted by: bidalah | September 22, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

instead of the one nobody bothers to read.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite


Spoken like it actually knows something about this.

that could be a new fix happening. Oh wait, it also knows about time in the day room and ligning up for meds.

what a quiff bag!

Posted by: snowbama | September 22, 2009 4:09 PM | Report abuse

TO: "GoldandTanzanite" @ 3:24 p.m.

What if I told you that the security/military/intel officials who know about and approved the covert assault of Americans with classified microwave and laser directed energy weapons are now worrying that they are about to lose their careers -- and for some, perhaps, maybe more?

The above is a question, not a statement... but you just never know...

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america
http://nowpublic.com/world/domestic-torture-radiation-weaponry-americas-horrific-shame

Posted by: scrivener50 | September 22, 2009 4:01 PM | Report abuse

JakeD and WashingtonDame,

We in Mass. elected two Democrats to represent us in the Senate. In 2004, there was legitimate concern that, if Kerry won the Presidency, Gov. Romney would appoint a Repub. to replace him - undermining the will of the voters for his own political gain. So yes, the power was taken away from him, and yes, it was political. Stop the presses.

We are now looking for an interim replacement until the special election so that, yes, we have two Dems representing us in the Senate, esp. with some critically important bills coming up for a vote this fall.

Political? Sure. Hypocritical? I keep hearing this charge, but I don't get it. How is it hypocritical? We want two Dems representing us in the Senate. Dems outnumber Repubs by huge margins in the Mass. House and Senate - is there any doubt that if the situation were reversed, Republicans wouldn't be using their majority to ensure their interests were being served?

It's politics - grab your smelling salts and head for the fainting couch.

Posted by: mwallace8831 | September 22, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I'm amazed that people can't understand this.

Before 2004: The governor appoints a senator for a term of several years, until the next election.
2004 change: The new senator is chosen in a special election within about 6 months.
2009 change: The governor appoints a TEMPORARY senator for the 6 months until the special election.

This is not a reversal of the 2004 change. It's an additional change which ensures that the people get to choose their senator and that the state doesn't lose half of its representation. There's no hypocrisy here.

Posted by: Blarg | September 22, 2009 3:54 PM | Report abuse

I guess political hypocrisy is acceptable. If it wasn't acceptable for Gov Romney in 2004, how is it appropriate for Gov Patrick?

Posted by: TexasProud1 | September 22, 2009 3:49 PM | Report abuse

In 2004, we were fighting over the 50th Senate seat, not the 60th. If Kerry had been elected, and Romney picked a senator for a 2-year or 5-month term, Mass. Dems would have been excoriated.

Anyone who thinks that a Republican-held state legislature would not have done exactly the same thing in similar circumstances is not being honest with themselves.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | September 22, 2009 3:48 PM | Report abuse

Why doesn't Massachusetts just write the bill this way, "no Republican can be appointed to an empty Senate seat, only a Democrat."

It would slightly less hypocritical than the current version.

Posted by: WashingtonDame | September 22, 2009 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Get real, Chris. Whether its Dukakis or Kirk or anyone else, it will be a flash in the pan compared to all the Kennedy tributes and the Special Election coverage. Or for that matter, the nomination controversy itself.

Let Dukakis have his 4-month Senate career.

Posted by: mikeinmidland | September 22, 2009 3:34 PM | Report abuse

See. scriv, if you could just hit Submit BEFORE the energy weapon part you would be one of the more valuable contributors here instead of the one nobody bothers to read.

Posted by: GoldAndTanzanite | September 22, 2009 3:24 PM | Report abuse

WE LIKE MIKE

Michael Dukakis is a good and well-known man and a dedicated public servant with a distinguished record of serving the people of Massachusetts. He also did a fine job of hosting the old PBS show, "The Advocates" years back. If he stays away from tanks and helmets, he'll make a worthy successor to Ted Kennedy.

***

ATTENTION A.G. HOLDER: Where is the DOJ Civil Rights Division investigation into the covert use of silent, harmful microwave and laser directed energy weapons on unjustly targeted Americans and their families by a Bush-legacy federal-local "multi-agency coordinated action program" that continues to commit civil and human rights violations under Team Obama...

...including warrantless GPS-activated "community stalking" harassment by vigilantes affiliated with federally-funded community policing and town watch groups?

http://nowpublic.com/world/gestapo-usa-govt-funded-vigilante-network-terrorizes-america OR http://NowPublic.com/scrivener RE: "GESTAPO USA"

Posted by: scrivener50 | September 22, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Dukakis would be a great pick. He is a smart guy who genuinly cares about the people of Massachusetts. Plus he lives in a Duplex down the street from a friend of mine.

No matter who Patrick picks, having the 60th Democratic vote in the senate would be great for the likelihood of Healthcare reform passing.

Posted by: AndyR3 | September 22, 2009 3:07 PM | Report abuse

So, why couldn't Gov. Romney be trusted to appoint an interim Senator just five short years ago?

Posted by: JakeD | September 22, 2009 2:38 PM | Report abuse

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