NEW YORK (CNN) - Actress Fran Drescher has expressed interest in being appointed to the U.S. Senate seat that New York's Hillary Clinton is giving up to become secretary of state, a spokesman for the actress said.
"Fran Drescher, actress, women's health advocate and public diplomacy envoy for the U.S. State Department, announced that she is throwing her hat into the ring of contenders for the senate seat being vacated by Secretary of State-designate Hillary Rodham Clinton," Drescher spokesman Jordan Brown told CNN in a written statement late Monday.
Watch: CNN's Alina Cho break down Drescher's interest
Drescher, 51, is best known for her starring role in the 1990s television comedy "The Nanny" and an adenoidal voice that could strip the rust off an engine block - a talent that might come in handy during a Senate filibuster.
But since a bout with uterine cancer, she has become an activist for better health care for women and was named a State Department public envoy on the issue in September. Drescher recently toured Eastern European countries to raise awareness of the issue on behalf of the State Department.
New York Gov. David Paterson will appoint a successor for Clinton, who still must be confirmed by her Senate colleagues for the Cabinet post. That successor would face voters in a special election in 2010.
A spokesman for Patterson did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday morning.
Speculation over Paterson's choice reached a frenzy over the weekend after reports that Caroline Kennedy, daughter of assassinated President John F. Kennedy, had phoned to discuss the position.
Paterson said Monday that Kennedy had called him and "asked a few questions," but dismissed other reports as "gossip."
"And frankly, this is a serious issue which I think is starting to be
treated as some sort of reality TV show," he added.
A senior adviser to Clinton, Philippe Reines, said she would not comment on her possible successors.
"This is entirely Governor Patterson's decision and we're respecting the privacy of his process," Reines said.
I would be highly supportive of Caroline Kennedy for the position.
Given that there are no requirements other than age set forth in the Constitution about being a Senator, she's welcome to state her case. If I were Patterson, I'd have a binder with all of the possible people that are interested in the job. Talking with all of them would take a while, but when all of the talking is done, then you are ready with someone as soon as Clinton stands down.
I'd be happy with the Nanny, however, the kennedy's are expecting a pay back. That family is something else.
That's diabolical. Patterson's bought himself a breathing space, if nothing else. By the time they're done quivering in their boots over the thought of a Drescher filibuster, they'll accept anybody else Patterson may consider with heartfelt relief.
Fran might be really good in the Senate, but the thought of listening to that voice reading from the Washington, DC, phone book is enough to give me the willies.
You must be kidding...
C'mon Miss Fine!!!!
Gimme a break.
Not gonna happen ... Caroline Kennedy vs Fran Drescher .... um ... let's see.
Don't get me wrong, as a read blooded American boy, there were aspects that I REALLY REALLY liked about her character ... but everything has it's place.
I"ve never felt the Congress, the Senate, the Cabinet, the Whitehouse or the Supreme Court was anyplace for ANY athlete, actor or actress .... unless they were a Rhodes Scholar... that includes Ronnie Raygun, Fred Thompson, Arnold Schwartznegger, Fred Gundy, Heath Schuler, or Fran Drescher.
carolyn kennedy would be the best choice for senator clintons replacement.
The hostess with the mostest!
Is this some kind of joke? Fran has been following Palin too long. See what happens when you let one moron run for office? It opens the floodgate of fools.
Fran, I loved you as the Nanny, however, that doesn't mean I want you as a Senator.
Not Fran D.
Not Caroline K.
NO MORE HOLLYWOOD STAR TYPES.
Only SERIOUS candidates need apply!
Of all the qualified people in NY to take Hillary's senate seat It's laughable that Fran Dresher thinks she has a chance.
What is our senate turning into.... a laughing stock?
I don’t doubt her sincerity, but this selection should be treated with the utmost respect and Governor Patterson needs to think about selecting someone that could possibly win the seat in 2010 and perhaps beyond.
Being a New Yorker....so far only two promisinng candidates for me....Kennedy or Gillabrand
In 1926, when Jack Warner's brothers were trying to drag him and the
studio into "talking pictures," he famously retorted: "Who in the hell
wants to listen to an actor talk?"
Fran the Nanny? Good grief!
One intelligent, serious, hard working woman to replace another ... Fran gets my vote!
Now that is change I can't live with!
Her laugh makes me cringe, it can be the trademark for our country after the honeymoon...
Hey why not? She certainly can't do any worst than Chuck Shumer and the other democratic senators, and she's far easier on the eyes than Pelosi and Hillary.
She'd be a very effective Senator. Everyone would give her whatever she wanted just to keep from hearing that horrible whiny voice!
Fran, I love ya, but please.. This is ridiculous.
At first, I thought, "you've got to be joking." But the more I thought about it, I thought, maybe she could be a good appointment. Although a comedic actress originally, she takes these issues very seriously.
Of course, I also like Caroline Kennedy. Either would please the left wing of the party. Of course, Caroline would appeal to those of us who remember her father's time in the White House – and exactly where we were when we heard that horrible news.
I would rather have Fran than Kennedy. Have you ever listened to Fran D. talk politics. She's impressive! I'd much rather have her than Caroline Kennedy whose only qualification is that she's a lawyer and JFK's daughter. I'm sure her big mouth uncle will have his paw prints all over this trying to persuade Gov. Paterson to give her the seat. Kennedys crack me up.....they think the can do anything or get anything they want just because of their familial name! NO KENNEDY! Besides, have you ever heard her speak publicly...what a yawner! She sounds like that teacher (Ben Stein) in Ferris Bueller's Day Off..."Anyone, anyone". BORING! Nobody wants to listen to that. Now Fran D. on the other hand....I'd listen to her and actually be interested in what she has to say. That woman is very smart and very insightful!! Don't let the comedian thing fool you, folks!
I like the "Kennedy" name better.