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

Senate Majority Leader wants Kennedy to replace Clinton

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="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. Joe the Troll

    "Wonderful thing about being a Senator or Congress-person … no qualifications required … or so it seems."

    Yeah, I was thinking the same thing when they started the talk about Joe the Plumber running.

    December 16, 2008 08:27 pm at 8:27 pm |
  2. Say Chowda

    Remy, "retard", awesome political discourse, go put down your etch-a-sketch, the big people are blogging.

    This never worked a day in her life, silver spoon fed KNOWS NOTHING about running a business, a city, a state or how a BUDGET works would NOT even be a candidate if she was Caroline Smith.

    Sitting at luncheons and giving out awards in your Fathers honor does not a Senator make, being a Kennedy does not a Senator make.

    There was a time when we applauded people that EARNED everything they have in life (Palin) instead of people who relied on their hubby's name (Hillary) or their family name (Kennedy).

    You can disagree with her policies and what not (and I DO with Palin), but the facts are tricky things.

    December 16, 2008 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  3. Zman

    it seems funny that Caroline Kennedy who has no qualifications is put to the top of list...but when Gov. Palin gets pick for VP she is harold as dum hick from alaska....i guess when you have have a drug dealing grandfathers who can leave you money cant buy good press

    zman Anchorage

    December 16, 2008 08:32 pm at 8:32 pm |
  4. Colin the Salesman

    As a New Yorker, I can say that she would be a solid pick. She has a good intellect, she has lived in NY for a long time, and the fact that she would bring immediate heavyweight status to NY would be a plus( Hear that, Republicans? Don't import Alan Keyes into Illinois again!)

    Its also useful to point out that she would transcend the upstate/downstate split that is plaguing our state, so she is the logical choice. Andrew Cuomo is not tempermentally suited for the Senate, but he would make an excellent chief executive, either in Albany or DC. I think picking her would show better judgement on David Patterson's part than his recent proposal to tax soft drinks: a so-called "obesity tax" is an insult to people with weight problems, instead of promoting a healthier life style.

    December 16, 2008 08:35 pm at 8:35 pm |
  5. Joe Fattal

    Why anyone will give anything free for Caroline Kennedy. If she wants Hillary empty senate seat let her pay for it. The money can be use for any charitable organization in new york. Or, come out with a new election.

    December 16, 2008 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  6. Gary Dickson

    I think it would be a BIG mistake to appoint Caroline Kennedy to fill Sen. Clinton's likely vacant seat. She has virtually no public service experience. The only thing she appears to have going for her is her Uncle Teddy is in the senate. Bloodline does not a lawmaker make. And "Cowering Harry" endorses her? Sheesh. Reid is about as effective of a leader as a neutered ferret. How 'bout Reid resigning and the governor of Nevada or wherever he's from could appoint someone who could make an impact in the senate.

    December 16, 2008 08:39 pm at 8:39 pm |
  7. Ray from CA

    People are so stupid! All you do is hate in poltics! Grow up, I'm 16 and don't act like this! Geez.

    December 16, 2008 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  8. Dude

    Hillary should still opt out of Obama Cabinet. He has lots of skeleton in hizs cupboard and it is highly unlikely he will complete 4 yrs. THis is one reason he is distributing the goodies left and right.
    By the way Kerry what a sorry figure, he deserved it.

    December 16, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  9. Diana

    whats up blocking some answeres ...thats ok I can go to Fox they let everyone have thir called freedom

    December 16, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  10. susie

    She paid for the Senate seat with her endorsement of Obama.

    December 16, 2008 09:03 pm at 9:03 pm |
  11. Jennifer

    For someone who has stayed pretty private all her 50-some years, looks like Caroline has had a taste of the limelight since the Obama campaign and likes the increasing popularity she is receiving.

    December 16, 2008 09:06 pm at 9:06 pm |
  12. Larry

    I was to young to vote for JFK but I do not think he would approve of his daughter NOT running for office and just being appointed–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 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  13. Tony, Enterprise, Alabama

    Americans voted Democratic in the last election in spite of Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, not because of them.

    Senator Reid's judgements concerning Caroline Kennedy and her qualifications to become a United States Senator from New York show just how out of step he is with the rest of the nation.

    It is unthinkable that that she should be given the job because she is a "Kennedy", whatever the hell that means. I think Governor Patterson should appoint a caretaker, perhaps Bill Clinton to fill out the next two years. Then if Caroline decides she wants it bad enough, and has the moxy to campaign; she can earn it like everyone else.

    Otherwise, fugettaboutit.

    December 16, 2008 09:09 pm at 9:09 pm |
  14. J.C.

    It may be necessary to require a basic qualified exam for congressional candidates. I mean some basic knowledge about our government and Constitution beyond high school level.

    I can't wait to see Caroline Kennedy answering questions in public for her own campaign. She will impress many of us.

    December 16, 2008 09:10 pm at 9:10 pm |
  15. john from sandiego

    she is more qualified by osmosis to be senator than the community organizer is to be president-elect..

    December 16, 2008 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  16. charzie, NY

    Caroline Kennedy for NY Senator, in my State? No real political leadership experience? Why not give her a try in the Senate....she can't do any worse than some of those in the Senate now who had "loads of experience" when elected or appointed and once in office have accomplished not much more- than 2-hr. lunches and mid-day golf outings. I like her personality....

    December 16, 2008 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  17. Larry in Houston, Texas

    You don't need qualifications for a political Job, period......
    Bush was not Smart, either....Palin isn't either....I can name people throughout history, such as : George Washington, there are people that don't have P.H.D.'s / Doctorate's / Masters / & Engineers of all types......They don't have to have this type of education, people....

    # 1 You have to know how to TALK to people...(such as to be an eloquent speaker)
    # 2 You have to know how to RAISE MILLIONS of Dollars......

    They did not have to have a "Resume" or be some type of "Rocket Scientist" to hold a political the 50's / 60's / 70's / 80's ....

    ( I hope I educated some of you morons)

    Houston, TEXAS

    December 16, 2008 09:28 pm at 9:28 pm |
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