Monday, August 31, 2009

Have the Kennedy's Handed Their Political Keys to Obama?

Many saw Ted Kennedy's endorsement of Obama in the Democratic primaries last year as his handing the keys to Camelot to someone outside the family.

Kennedy's son Patrick, a Democratic congressman from Rhode Island, has kept a relatively low profile in Congress and has faced substance abuse problems that have led to stints in rehab facilities.

JFK's daughter, Caroline, stepped into the political spotlight recently, only later to drop out of the running for Hillary Clinton's vacant Senate seat.

Robert Kennedy's son Joe was derailed after a messy personal life involving a high-profile annulment, and Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, the former lieutenant governor of Maryland, has largely stayed out of the spotlight.

Others, like Robert Kennedy Jr., have careers in public service outside of government.

But Stephen Hess, a former staffer in the Eisenhower and Nixon administrations and an adviser to presidents Ford and Carter, says that right now, there are no other Kennedys to assume Ted Kennedy's place in American politics. But don't count them out....

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