- Off topic post if you don't mind:
Personally, I find myself to be highly offended by Caroline Kennedy's shamelessly high-profile power play to win Governor Paterson's appointment to Hillary Clinton's seat. I think it's nothing but the presumptuous play on the entitlement brought by her last name that her critics make it out to be. The woman has little qualification for the job, and I don't certainly don't blame others who may (or may not) be interested in the position - those who have already demonstrated that they know and have what it takes to win an elected position in this state, but who have conducted themselves with dignity throughout this process - for being resentful.
As Democratic consultant Hank Sheinkopf points out in an op-ed piece for CNN.com, we have no idea where Ms. Kennedy stands on any of the important issues of the day; not even, and especially so, after her little tour of upstate, during which she arrogantly refused to answer any substantive questions (perhaps taking a lesson from Sarah Palin). She's a "Clinton-Democrat?" What does that mean - that she initially supported the war in Iraq? But as Sheinkopf sarcastically points out, none of this really seems to matter:
Her unique experience of writing a book or two, smiling well, appearing from time to time -- but not too often -- at city mayoral news conferences announcing help for those who attend New York City public schools -- and, well, just being a Kennedy -- should suffice.What's even worse in my mind is the pressure being applied on Governor Paterson to pick her; in particular, that from US Senate Majority Leader Henry Reid, who was reported to have spoke[n] by phone with Paterson and urged Kennedy’s appointment. We've been reading quite a bit about the Blagojevich scandal, and using a Senate appointment to curry favor can work both ways. I don't know exactly what Senator Reid's stake in this is, perhaps merely a nod towards Uncle Ted. But Reid must be aware that Paterson will no doubt soon be coming before the Senate in desperate search of federal aid towards his bloated deficit, and I therefore find any lobbying of the governor on Ms. Kennedy's behalf to be completely inappropriate.
Having said that, let's of course not be naive. No doubt that Governor Paterson will make the pick with his own political fortunes in mind. But here's what I think is are fallacies in the argument that he would pick her to enhance his own election chances in 2010. For one thing, with Ms. Kennedy being the blank slate that she is, Paterson may be concerned about the potential pitfalls regarding her actual political skills, and the possibility of his being dragged down with her should her performance be lacking, or worse. In addition, remember that Senator Schumer will be running for re-election as well; so Paterson will already have a familiar and popular (enough) name on the ticket with him.
And finally, Paterson has to be thinking that a headlining ticket trio consisting of a Senator from Brooklyn, a governor from Harlem, and a denizen of the Upper East Side with a lot of powerful friends on the inside is not going to play well upstate. So I'm going to remain out on my very lonely limb and say that he goes with Rep. Gillibrand instead.
- While I'm already off topic, the Jets are five point favorites in Seattle tomorrow. Now that everyone here seems to be writing them off - after a win! - I actually feel better about their chances to cover that spread than I did last week. One thing I've found about football over the years (especially from rooting against the Giants) is that a win is a win, not only in the standings, but in terms of a team's confidence as well. It doesn't matter if it's "lucky," or against a bad team. You may call it luck, but as far as the Jets go, Abram Elam and Shaun Ellis made a play, and they won the game. I think it will carry over. And besides, as a loyal reader pointed out to me, the football Gods are setting us all up for the showdown with Chad next Sunday night. Oh man...