The late Ted Kennedy got his dying wish today, when Governor Deval Patrick appointed Paul Kirk to the U.S. Senate. Paul Kirk will fill the seat until a special election is held in January, Kirk himself will not run in the special election.

Paul Kirk Kennedy successor




Gov. Patrick was just given the authority to name a successor within the last 48 hours when the Massachusetts legislature voted to overturn a law that would allow the Governor to do so.

Massachusetts law had previously been changed to special election in 2004 when Senator Kennedy petitioned the legislature to take the succession power away from then Governor Mitt Romney (R).

Democrats have been accused of being hypocritical when it comes to this appointment. Back in 2004 when they had a pipe dream of a John Kerry Presidency, they wouldn’t allow Romney, a Republican, to name a successor. Choosing to enact a 5 month period for a special election; citing the people of Massachusetts right to choose their Senator.

Now, democrats are saying and have been saying that is just simply too long for the people of Massachusetts to be without proper representation. From Real Clear Politics:

“The issues before the Congress and the nation are simply too important to Massachusetts for us to be one voice short,” said Patrick. “The legislature has granted the governor the authority to appoint someone to be that second voice in the United States Senate until the January election.”

Let’s be real about this issue once and for all. This was all about the final wishes of a man revered by liberals. It was Kennedy who had the law changed in 2004, it was Kennedy who asked for the change back this year. The pick of Paul Kirk is the Kennedy family choice as well. Serving as an advisor to Senator Kennedy for many years; Kennedy’s widow Vicki gave her seal of approval regarding the choice.

Paul Kirk served as a formal advisor to Kennedy from 1969-1977, he was also chairman of the DNC from 1985-1989. At the Deval Patrick press conference naming Kirk, John Kerry the now senior Senator from Massachusetts endorsed the choice.

So Kennedy gets his wish in the end. The democrats get their way once again; changing the rules of the game midstream. I have no problem with a Governor naming a Senator to fill a vacant seat. Deval Patrick should have been able to name Paul Kirk to the U.S. Senate. The problem is the lack of scrutiny given to Kennedy when he petitioned for the change in the succession law to begin with in 2004.