Waiting for Senator Dukakis

One of Ted Kennedy’s dying wishes was for a politically expedient change in the Massachussetts election laws, to slot in an interim Senator for the political expedient change in Massachussetts election law that occured in 2004 to keep Mitt Romney from appointing President-elect John Kerry’s replacement.  That item of politics is something that bears to be kept in mind as the attempt to incur into existence a “Wellstone Effect” of a backlash by referencing such a thing (here and here second to last paragraph and here — that last one wins the day in being the first item to appear when typing the phrase into google news — so, congratulations “Hot Air”!) at the same time Republican Senators sit on their hands and claim that Kennedy’s absence in the reason they can’t figure out how to take part in the Democrats’ Health Care attempts.  What do you think “Kennedy would have wanted”?

The election mid-stream change is for the best, and probably should be roughly made equivalent throughout the other 49 states.  Wyoming has a good system, and one that would work for small d democratic values with Massachusetts at the moment due to the nature of their partisan politics: overwhelming legislature of one party in perpetuity, Senators off to Washington the same, governor liable to be of the other party.  Wyoming’s legislature sends the governor three names to choose from, and that is that.

The law should be that a Political Ghost of the deceased’s rough ideological framework is appointed for the interim 6 months, before that special election spits out the new Senator for the rest of the term.  The name that comes out for Massachusetts is Michael Dukakis.  There seems to be a steam-roller demanding Senator Michael Dukakis.  I like the idea.  He is a place-holder and a political ghost.  Are there any other big name Massachusetts Democrats of the past three decades, or is the fact that the Senate has been firmly in hands of Kennedy and Kerry, and no Democrat was elected to the governor’s mansion for 16 years after Dukakis waddled away leave that cupboard barren?

In 2002, after Wellstone died, the political ghost that was attempted to be brought before the people of Minnesota was Walter Mondale.  Unfortunately, the “interim” was to be a full six years, so Norm Coleman ended up in that seat — practically by default.  The interesting thing about South Dakota when Tim Johnson suffered severe health problems was that the the most evident “political ghost” that haunts those halls for an interim would have been the other Democratic presidential loser, George McGovern.  This suffers the basic problem in the rulese in that it would have a liberal replace a “centrist”.  Just as well that the law would have given the Republican governor the appointee.  Which is probably better than what happened in Georgia in 2000 when a deceased Republican Senator was replaced by the Democratic governor with Zell Miller.

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