September 23rd, 2009
11:12 AM ET
10 years ago

Kirk is Kennedy family favorite to fill Mass. Senate seat

(CNN) - Two Kennedy family associates tell CNN's John King that Paul Kirk, longtime senior aide to the late Sen. Ted Kennedy, is the family's favorite to fill his vacant Senate seat - and that the late senator's sons have relayed this view to Gov. Deval Patrick.

Asked if Patrick is on board, one of these sources said "it is 75 percent there."

On Tuesday, the Massachusetts Senate passed a bill that would allow Patrick to appoint a temporary replacement for Kennedy until an election can be held to fill the seat in January. That measure is now up for final consideration by both chambers of the legislature.

Update: One source tells CNN's Gloria Borger that Vicki Kennedy, Ted Kennedy's widow, also favors the appointment of Paul Kirk to fill her late husband's vacant Senate seat.

Filed under: Paul Kirk • Ted Kennedy
soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. No Incumbents 2010

    If the Kennedys wanted the seat, then a Kennedy should have run for it. The seat belongs to the people, not the Kennedys. The people's representative will select the appointee, not the Kennedys.

    September 23, 2009 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  2. Bob in Pa

    When you're a Democrat, It's different !
    We don't need no stinking rules !

    September 23, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  3. Proud Member..Party of No

    Wait a minute...what happened to the special election to fill an empty seat? Oh yeah I forgot....these are democrats and laws don't apply to them.

    September 23, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  4. Fair is Fair

    The "interim appointment" is not a done deal.

    In order for this to take place, the bill sent to Gov. Dimwit Patrick has to include a preamble – without it, there would be a 90 day waiting period before the legislation is effective.

    That is, UNLESS there is a 2/3 majority in both chambers. Neither chamber's vote had this majority in their vote.

    Sooooo... unless some of the legislators "flip" their vote, the appointment wount occur until after the first of the year (because of the Christmas recess). Since the general election is in earl January, what's the sense?

    Fellow Massachusetts residents, I urge you to see how your representative and senator voted, and if they voted "no", urge them to not reverse their position.

    September 23, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  5. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    Thank you Massachusetts for not letting the Democratic Party down. We will need every vote to pass healthcare reform.

    September 23, 2009 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  6. coffic

    Interesting, but, who cares? It should be up to the people of Massachusetts, and the Kennedy associates can add their 2 votes.

    September 23, 2009 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  7. Idiot_Pelosi

    Who cares what the Kennedy family wants?

    Get someone not connected to this MAFIA family.

    September 23, 2009 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  8. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    This episode has been a shameful partisan display by Democrats in MA. The law was expressly changed to prevent a Republican governor from appointing another Republican if Kerry had won the Presidency. Now because they want another Democratic vote, they change the rules again.

    September 23, 2009 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  9. Dennis

    Hopefully the voters of Massachusetts have some say in this rather than have the Kennedy family make the decision.

    September 23, 2009 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  10. Fred NJ

    It's not about what the Kennedy's want. It about what the folks in MA want!
    Get it?

    September 23, 2009 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  11. Pat F

    'The family's favorite"?

    No democracy in the People's Republic of Massachusetts.

    September 23, 2009 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  12. T22

    Lets see, if governor is Republican, appointment of someone to fill the seat is bad. If governor is Democrat, then it's good. And if the Democrat appoints the one that the Kennedy's wanted to appoint, then even better. Why have the people decide when the Democrats in power know better? Right? I wonder if Obama has anointed his choice or if he's tried to run off anyone who wanted to run, like in NY.

    September 23, 2009 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  13. Tom, NC

    Nice to know that Massachusetts voters are stupid enough to be considering leaving their 'royal' family in a position of influence. Perhaps some swimming lessons and substance abuse therapy would be in order.... and some economics classes.... or – wait – wasn't that the class in which Ted was caught plagerizing?

    September 23, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  14. Bluebonnet

    Different laws for the MA dems. They stole it from Romney and now crying to reverse their own law!! Typical shady dems but oh my, if it were a GOP, we'd never hear the end of it. Rules/laws don't seem to apply to the thieves in the democRAT party.

    September 23, 2009 12:10 pm at 12:10 pm |
  15. johnk

    Hey kids, there is an election.

    This interim appointment is for a few months, when the election is complete. The people will choose their Senator. The interim appointment is a caretaker. Kirk fits the caretaker role, someone who's not going to run for office and will allow the state to have full representation and the use of the office for services. Right now we only have a single office for state services. We need both.

    September 23, 2009 12:14 pm at 12:14 pm |
  16. aneanderthal

    Kirk probably had a lot of experience cleaning up the Kennedy messes and paying off all of the people that jerk damaged over the years. It is only fitting and right that the favorite of the corrupt unions and democratic politicians in Massachusetts choose him.

    September 23, 2009 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  17. wait a minute

    Although I admire the Kennedy family's contribution to the country, I don't think it is up to the family to pick the next senator. It should be up to the MA voters and Governor Patrick will be held responsible for his choice.

    September 23, 2009 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  18. Lou

    I have every confidence in Governor Patrick's ability to make a reasoned choice for interim United States senator. My personal favorite is former Governor Mike Dukakis. I know Mike would serve the commonwealth with honor and dignity. His would be a strong second voice representing the people of Massachusetts during a critical period. Some may not recall but Governor Dukakis and Senator Kerry were a team long ago. I'm sure they would work well together again.

    September 23, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  19. LacrosseMom

    The far-right does not seem to understand! Appointing someone to FINISH Sen. Kennedy's present term in office is done in EVERY state IF one of their Congressional representatives dies or is impaired in some way.

    Once the 2010 Elections come around, everyone and anyone who wants to run for Kennedy's seat CAN!

    Why must the far-right turn everything into a communist or a socialist argument or comment? You people are SO afraid, you should seek psychological help!

    September 23, 2009 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  20. deborah/kansas city

    This is a TEMPORARY appointment until the election can happen. I understand that the peson appointed will not be eligible to run for the office.Then the people will have their say and elect who they want. The people of Mass, elected Ted Kennedy, over and over and over again; so they obviously approved of his actions and policies and the way he represented them. During this important time, of course, the people should be allowed full representation in the Senate. To do otherwise is purly partisan on the part of Republicans and does not serve the people's best interest.

    September 23, 2009 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  21. Nagudcm Sugna

    I am glad to see that the Kennedys will be deciding who will fill their vacancy.

    September 23, 2009 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |