December 16th, 2008
04:20 PM ET
10 years ago

Senate Majority Leader wants Kennedy to replace Clinton

Senate Leader Harry Reid has thrown his support behind Caroline Kennedy in her bid to replace Hillary Clinton in the Senate.

Senate Leader Harry Reid has thrown his support behind Caroline Kennedy in her bid to replace Hillary Clinton in the Senate.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid is backing Caroline Kennedy to replace Secretary of State-designate Hillary Clinton as the next senator from New York.

Watch: Reid on Kennedy

The majority leader told Nevada Political analyst Jon Ralston Tuesday that he personally called New York Gov. David Paterson urging him to appoint Kennedy to the seat.

“She's 52 years old,” Reid said in an interview on Ralston’s Nevada-based television show ‘Face-to-Face.’ “I've spoken to her. She was part of a vetting process for vice presidential choices for Obama. She's lived in government and politics her whole life. I think it would be a tremendous thing....We have a lot of stars from New York. Bobby Kennedy. Hillary Clinton. I think Caroline Kennedy would be perfect. “

When asked by Ralston if he planned on calling the governor, Reid answered, “I already have.”

A Reid spokesman confirms to CNN that the majority leader called Paterson last week expressing his support for Kennedy.

But even as Reid is supporting Kennedy for Senate, some Clinton supporters aren't so enthusiastic - including Rep. Anthony Weiner and Robert Zimmerman - a CNN contributor, DNC member and Clinton supporter.

But a person familiar with the replacement process says supporters who made anti-Kennedy comments were immediately rebuked by the Clinton team.

Meanwhile, former New York City Mayor Ed Koch, who supported Clinton, chided critics who questioned Kennedy's qualifications.

"I say it's boloney. I say she's as qualified as those in the Senate. I think there are a lot of qualified people in the Senate, some are not qualified. She's as qualified as the best," he said.

Filed under: Caroline Kennedy • Harry Reid • Popular Posts
soundoff (192 Responses)
  1. Mildred Wood

    Caroline Kennedy should NOT get to become a senator just because her father and uncle were in politics. She has not had government experience, has basically stayed out of the "lime light" and there are many other people who would probably do a better job.

    Three kennedy's is enough!!!

    December 16, 2008 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  2. Hmmmm

    Dang. Palin didn't have enough experience. Kennedy does, because, well...of course, well, this is different now.

    December 16, 2008 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  3. karen-phoenix

    Read Caroline Kennedy's bio! She's more than qualified!!!

    December 16, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  4. Larry

    Caroline is a beautiful human ...

    Who's heart is in the right place

    She, like Obama cares about The People

    May I never awake from this beautiful dream of real Democracy

    December 16, 2008 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  5. GuyInVA

    Bobby Kennedy and Hilary Clinton were/are stars. But from New York? Only because New York law allows last minute residency as a qualification for senate. If that's the law, so be it. But, please Senator Reid, don't insult everyone's intelligence. She's lived in government and politics her whole life. Fine. Michael Reagan for senate. How about Ron Reagan. Eleanor Mondale (I'm sure President Clinton would approve). I've got it. Chastity Bono.

    December 16, 2008 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  6. Jaime H.

    No history (known) of her achievements. Just her last name. Not enough, in my opinion. Blago comes to mind ...

    December 16, 2008 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  7. MD

    Wow, she just got the moron endorsement.

    December 16, 2008 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  8. Look ALIVE!

    Madam Kennedy is a true humanitarian. She truely cares for people just like her other family members. We could use more people like her running America looking out for the "little" folks...

    December 16, 2008 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  9. Guh!

    It would seem that these days having been around and involved in politics is a bad thing. What has all our 'experience' in Congress got us so far? Lowest approval ratings ever! Guess that does take some real skill.

    December 16, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  10. Patriot

    "No qualification required"?
    The woman is a freaking LAWYER!

    Caroline hails from a FAMILY OF LEADERS!
    That are some of the very good reasons that the visionary and highly intelligent Obama picked Caroline Kennedy to help with the selection and vetting of a VP, of which Americans ARE QUITE SATISFIED!

    Caroline Kennedy is OVERQUALIFIED for the US Senate!
    I can think of tens of US Senators of which Caroline Kennedy is more capable, and would be more useful FOR AMERICA!

    December 16, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  11. Sweetie

    Talk about using a Family Name to get what you want...

    December 16, 2008 05:34 pm at 5:34 pm |
  12. Wacky Obacky

    Reid wants to ensure that no one in the Senate is as qualified as he is. Obvioulsy, this means that we must set a VERY low bar!

    December 16, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  13. Bartlet

    Senator Kennedy would be a fine representative for the State of New York. I honestly don't understand all the nay-sayers out there. Hillary supports should back the appointment due to the fact that Caroline is a strong woman who gets things done.

    Carol-K for the Senate 🙂

    December 16, 2008 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  14. Kitten Cat

    Yes, Caroline will make a great senator. She is smart, thoughtful and been around politics her entire life. A great addition!

    December 16, 2008 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  15. Charles L. Shaw, Liverpool, NY

    Isn't it the blue bloods that have gotten America into this mess? These elitist mega rich have no clue to what it is really like for the average American citizen. In my world people are loosing their jobs, homes, and the ability to feed themselves and/or their children.
    Wasn’t the bailout supposed to protect Main Street? Our local Salvation Army, Rescue Mission, and Food banks have no food to feed to starving here in upstate NY, and Ms. Kennedy will be our savior? What will she do? “Let them eat cake”?
    The leadership of this country better start talking to us little people some more, look past the metrics, and start looking into the eyes of the American citizen, and tell them straight up that they have neglected their sworn duty to uphold the U.S Constitution and the Citizens of the great land.

    December 16, 2008 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  16. Raph

    Good for Newyork,you can go ahead and pick a celebrity with no credentials other than opposing senator clinton.So go ahead and reward her with senator clintons seat.That makes so much sense.We are going to be governed and represented by rookies.This country is in for a rude awakening.Goodluck NY.

    December 16, 2008 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  17. John Galt in Colorado


    December 16, 2008 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  18. Dave, Illinois

    And you Libs who gripe about another Bush (Jeb) running for office are probably just fine with this. The Kennedys are a clan of murderers, rapists, and thugs. Reid is a pathetic little pawn. I hope the American people wake up by 2010 and silence the old man.

    December 16, 2008 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  19. Kyle EricSon

    I've got a novel idea regarding how to fill Obama's and Hillary's now vacant seats – HOLD AN ELECTION!

    December 16, 2008 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  20. minka from MO

    The name Kennedy seems to be all that one needs to become a Senator. Guess folks are afraid if they buck that name their time in politcs is gone. Gotta be nice to the Kennedy's.

    December 16, 2008 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  21. honestly

    ~~~GO CAROLINE!~~~

    December 16, 2008 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  22. mike

    just like in holywood nepotism so growing....thats why to many corrupt be cover when you bring all ur cronies

    December 16, 2008 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  23. Life Long Dem

    Let's not play the Palin game of nominating someone without proper credentials.

    December 16, 2008 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  24. Matt

    What a surprise the incompetant Senator Harry Reed is endorsing a fellow incompetant to join him in the US Country Club for Spoiled Brats and Idiots.

    Do we have any standards for being elected or in this case appointed to office? Shouldn't experience be one of them? Or is a last name and memories of her father and feeling bad for her uncles and her brother is enough?

    This is not a government of the people and by the people if Caroline gets appointed. Having your name on a charity because of your last name does not make you qualified.

    Mario Cuomo jr. and any other elected and currently serving member of New York State government is infinitely more qualified and deserving than Caroline Kennedy is.

    December 16, 2008 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  25. Leslie Somerville

    What an idiotic, stupid, repulsive move on behalf of the Senate Majority Leader. The Kennedy's are corrupt and Caroline is fluffy, artsy-fartsy.
    My God-Clinton must be happy (kidding)
    Just proves to show in America, if you have a name and connection s you can become anybody and anything you want, even a Senator with absolutely no qualifications.
    First job for Caroline will be to look on Wikepedia under, "What is a senator."

    December 16, 2008 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
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