December 16th, 2008
04:20 PM ET
9 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. BAM

    I want her to replace Clinton also! She is capable as well as honest. Good luck Caroline!!

    December 16, 2008 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  2. Lookout ForThatShoe

    You very wrong Fancisco Cardenas, there is a qualification for being appointed a's having a famous political name.

    December 16, 2008 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  3. Ed

    Like it has been said you only need money and title and no BRAINS + a few suckies to make you Senator Or Congress thing in DC.

    December 16, 2008 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  4. Nile

    Caroline –

    Good job . . . I trust this process of selection . . . this country needs more positive individuals like you!

    December 16, 2008 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  5. Ed

    That's a crock. She's more qualified than half the sitting senators right now. She wrote a book about the Bill of Rights and I'll lay even money that 85% of ALL elected officials couldn't name half of them. She's a school (Harvard) trained attorney and has dedicated her entire life to helping her fellow man. She would be just as qualified without the Kennedy name and she can with stand a background check. You can't sat that about too many people these days.

    December 16, 2008 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  6. Deep Throat

    Since when should a Senator from Nevada be influencing the choice of New York's next Senator?! Caroline Kennedy has NO business being our next Senator – and Harry Reid should shut his trap. I'm sure she's a very nice lady, but she simply does not have the qualifications. Hillary went through the process of getting elected and was already very experienced when she finally made her run. Caroline Kennedy has been running foundations her whole life. Just because she was born on third base does not mean she hit a triple,

    December 16, 2008 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  7. SG in SD

    She's certainly more qualified than Palin, Schwarzenegger, Ventura, etc.

    December 16, 2008 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  8. New York Voter

    Why don't New Yorkers deserve the best, most experienced and savvy senator we can get? Why do our best interests have to be set aside because some wealthy "aristocrat" decides she "wants" it?

    Just because she is a Kennedy? I, just one tax paying New Yorker, don't care whether the Kennedys get what they want.

    She wants to play at being a senator? Do it on someone else's dime.

    She couldn't find Rochester, Syracuse, the Tug Hill Plateau without a map. Hillary Clinton earned our respect and our vote. She decided to learn everything she could about ALL of New York, not just Manhattan.

    I think it's swell that Bloomberg says she's done so much for New York city. Let him appoint her to represent New York City.

    New York city represents only HALF of New York State. They don't have a clue about the rest of us.

    Come on, Governor, you're supposed to be Governor of us all. Don't give into this wealthy lady with an overblown sense of entitlement.

    December 16, 2008 05:53 pm at 5:53 pm |
  9. Richard Rohde

    Is this the same Harry Reid that knocked Sarah Palin concerning her lack of qualifications? What qualifies Harry Reid to be the Senate Majority Leader? What qualifies Hussein Obama to be president? What qualifies Charlie Rangel to dictate tax policy? Think we have a lot of unqualified people running this country right now. Actually the unions are running it and you can see the chumps they pick.

    December 16, 2008 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  10. Doug in New Mexico

    We need another Kennedy in government. I do think that she would do a good job as senator. I would hope that she would be safer than her father and uncle. Despite what some think of the clan they have done a lot for America.

    December 16, 2008 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  11. Larry

    This is NOT right–What the Democrat politicians are saying in no uncertain terms is ANYBODY can do this job,well bring in somebody that needs the money and health insurance then,we don't need to just be pumping somebodies ego trip for fame and fortune,she's already got that.

    December 16, 2008 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  12. Jerry Green

    A 52 year-old Kennedy who has done nothing to besmirch the name.
    Senators don't need qualifications, just good judgment. Leave the qualifications to her staff.

    December 16, 2008 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  13. Ron West Coast

    I wish the majority leader could be replaced, " Post Haste ".......
    And let there be no mistake, I am a loyal democrat , I just think that Sen. Harry Reid is as weak as water !!!!.....
    As for Caroline Kennedy, she would probably make a very good senator, but so would Cuomo, also Fran ( the Nanny ).....
    How about Bill Clinton ?

    December 16, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  14. Arden

    Caroline Kennedy would be a great choice. It seems to me experience isn't the most important thing. Being intelligent, having a back-bone and working for the people of New York is what counts. I believe that she will be a quick learner and will keep her focus on her work and the people will be her priority.

    December 16, 2008 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  15. Katie S

    Excellent! Go Caroline! Caroline is a quiet soul; but I believe she will take care of New York just as well as Hillary did. She has uncles and cousins that can guide her through the process. She is a wonderful fund raiser and had a kick butt gorgeous brother! Run Caroline and get that job! Now is the time to speak out and tell NY that you want the job! You can do it kiddo!

    December 16, 2008 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  16. Mari

    Even though I am a Democrat, I still believe that one needs some experience in the real world!

    I admire the Kennedys but.......

    December 16, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  17. Rick in WA

    While I don't agree with her politically, "qualification" should not really be an issue. We should be represented by fellow citizens, not by professional politicians.

    December 16, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  18. RCLGuard

    Francisco – the woman is a Harvard and Columbia law school graduate and has spent her entire life behind the scenes in government and politics.

    She's not just qualified, she's over-qualified.

    December 16, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  19. Chad

    Of course Reid wants her in, it is an automatic vote in his pocket.

    December 16, 2008 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  20. Nannie Bouroughs - Milwaukee, WI

    Yes, yes, yes, let's give all Kennedy's a seat in the senate on birth... they can grow their enormous EGO into it...

    December 16, 2008 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  21. PL

    Hey Francisco, news flash most of congress and the senate are former attorney's and business leaders and never held office at a state or even local level. Just based on her family connection and public service Mrs. Kennedy has more experience than anyone already there.

    December 16, 2008 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  22. earle,woodstock,vt

    Pathetic,! Ms. Kennedy keeps her name while naming her three children after their father. Experience; Oversight "Ballets" ,Author(of what?) this is a shame to hand someone such a powerful position,very similar,....? Think of it, never getting elected by the citizens of the United States. PS. Quote: Is this a great country or what,..

    December 16, 2008 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  23. Confused Democrat

    So I guess it seems now that all the people in NY that have worked on behalf of constituents, handled thousands of complaints, voted in the State of NY or in Congress, campaigned and won are no longer a great addition to the U.S. Senate. Kennedy and Franken both serve and have no purpose in the Senate. It is not the "joy-luck club". If they want her to be the Senator, let her run for it!!!!

    December 16, 2008 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  24. reggie

    Let me try to understand this....Caroline Kennedy is qualified to be senator according to Reid. But, Gov Palin is not? Interesting!

    December 16, 2008 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  25. Peggy

    I can't believe that the USA and Americans would choose someone with no experience in public office to become a senator. Women in other countries have a resume. Check out the following biographies: Angela Merkel in Germany, Ellen Surleaf Johnson in Liberia, Michelle Bachelet in Chile. These women have a history of public service.

    December 16, 2008 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
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