I was talking to a new friend over at PUMApac, and she mentioned something briefly that might explain why Kennedy chose to support Obama over Hillary… cause we should all admit we were taken by surprise on that one.
As we talked about it, things began to fill in… so here is how things basically fell into place over the course of that conversation….
Well, we all pretty much know that Kennedy was peeved at the Clintons for the way they cut him out in the 90′s on the whole universal healthcare tip, and was less than helpful to it’s passage because of it. If you didn’t, now you do. He was kind of a prig about it. So…
Was this little “beef” enough for him to snub Hillary for the newcomer? Probably not.
We can also assume that if Hillary is President and universal healthcare passes… she gets the credit. Keep in mind that this is something that Kennedy has fought for since the 70s. Ted has also lived in that shadow of his brothers and was expected to follow them in their footsteps to immortality and greatness… well, he hasn’t. Jack was the President of Camelot, Bobby was the hope that got taken away too soon, and there was Ted… an elder senator, a lion of the party, but a failed presidential primary candidate without a single piece of really major legislation to his name. And, interestingly enough, if we look back, none of the Kennedy’s ever got one of the MAJOR pieces of legislation.
LBJ got all of Jack’s civil rights stuff, RFK was deprived of his opportunity… so there is only Ted left, and while he has been a “Liberal Lion,” he has yet to pass anything like the New Deal, Civil Rights, or Great Society legislation.
So, we already decided that the left over animosity would not be quite enough for Kennedy to ditch Hillary for a relative unknown…
BUT what if there was a deal between Obama and Kennedy that would allow Kennedy to take the point position on universal healthcare?
Would that be enough? Would the opportunity to get to take point on and pass the legislative piece of his life be enough?
Ted gets his major piece of legislation. He gets to make his big mark. And he gets to step out from under the shadow of his brothers.
Well, it was an interesting thought… we had fun with it… I filed it away in my brain as a curiousity….
And then I see this.
Senator Edward M. Kennedy’s office has begun convening a series of meetings involving a wide array of healthcare specialists to begin laying the groundwork for a new attempt to provide universal healthcare, according to participants.
The discussions signal that Kennedy, who instructed aides to begin holding the meetings while he is in Massachusetts undergoing treatment for brain cancer, intends to work vigorously to build bipartisan support for a major healthcare initiative when he returns to Washington in the fall.
Those involved in the discussions said Kennedy believes it is extremely important to move as quickly as possible on overhauling the healthcare system after the next president takes office in January in order to capitalize on the momentum behind a new administration.
The highlighted portion is rather interesting in the light of the theory above.
Please forgive the tinfoil and a perhaps a bit of crassness, but the man has brain cancer… he is, rather unfortunately, not long for this world.
Don’t get me wrong, I love me some Kennedy. As totally pissed off as I am for him coming out and endorsing Obama, especially after the people of his state emphatically told him no… I still love and respect the guy. How could you not? He has served honorably for decades.
But could it be that this deal was made, and that he wants to get this legislation passed under his name before he passes? That this sense of urgency could be because he senses that he is running out of time?
Here’s the thing… I still remember the last piece of advice my parents gave me before I moved to DC the first time. They had worked in DC during the 60′s and 70′s, and as I drove off, they told me to “never underestimate the narcissism of a politician. Their desire to make their mark and to keep their jobs will override most everything else.”
The great thing about that piece of advice is that it doesn’t even exclude the “good guys.” Even they want to make their mark… real bad, and possibly worst of all…
Could it be that this deal was really made?
I don’t know… but nothing surprises me anymore.
Filed under: Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton | Tagged: Barack Obama, Clinton, Dad, Deal, Endorsement, General, Health, Hillary Clinton, Kennedy, Mom, Obama, UHC, UHI, Univeral Healthcare, Universal Health Insurance | 9 Comments »