Massachusetts politicians are at it again. The Democrat-laden state legislature is currently debating a bill that would allow Gov. “Coupe” Deval Patrick to appoint an interrim successor to fill the late Sen. Edward Kennedy seat, until a special election is held next January.
And why are they debating this bill? Because five years ago, many if not most of those same politicians changed the rules for succession of a Senator when it seemed possible that John Kerry might actually fulfill his soi disant destiny and report for duty to the White House in 2004. The rule prior to that had been that the Governor would appoint a replacement to serve the remainder of a term in the event that a Senate seat falls vacant.
But in 2004, there was a Republican sitting in the Governor’s Office who might appoint a Republican replacement, and we couldn’t have that! (Massachusetts may frequently tolerate Repbulican governors but our representatives in DC, especially those in the Senate, must be blue all the way through.) So the rules was changed to prevent such an abomination even though John Kerry’s preseidential ambition remained sadly unfulfilled.
Fast forward to August 2009. Senior Mass Senator Ted Kennedy sends a letter requesting the rules be changed yet again, back to the way they were. Stating the importance of having Massachusetts be fully represented in the Senate, Sen. Kennedy eloquently makes his plea, not just to the governor but in effect to the entire state; the last request of a dying man, as it were.
The trouble is, if Sen. Kennedy really had been all that concerned about Massachusetts representation, why didn’t he send that letter when he was first diagnosed with his illness? Or barring that, why didn’t he step down as Senator so that a special election could be held that much sooner? After all, he hadn’t participated in a Senate vote since April of 2009. That’s a long time for us to operate with only one Senator in DC, isn’t it?
No, the only reason this is being done is to get that all-important 60th Democrat back in the Senate as soon as possible, to preserve the fillibuster-proof majority the Dems would once again have if this travesty goes through. And make no mistake, this move has the full support and approval of the White House:
David Axelrod, President Barack Obama’s chief political strategist, called Murray earlier this week to discuss the proposed law change. Axelrod called to “see where the process is in terms of replacing a vacant Senate seat, understanding that we have important debates” coming up in the Senate, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said yesterday.
So once again, regardless of what the residents want (whether it’s removing bilingual education in favor of immersion programs, tax rollbacks, or clean elections), the will of the people still comes in a distant second place to the will of the politicians.