The Democratic Lion of the Senate is dead. I won’t pretend for a solitary second that I agreed with Ted Kennedy’s politics, but by all accounts he was a decent person who treated his friends and staff with dignity and respect. As a politician, his primary loss to Jimmy Carter in 1980 emboldened Kennedy to put aside any notions of bipartisanship and moderation and allowed him to become a hyper-partisan. Always more liberal than his brothers John and Robert, he moved steadily Left as he got older. He lived his life recklessly and did his job effectively and ruthlessly. The time will come when history will be able to look at his life fairly, including the triumphs, scandals, and tragedies that formed him. For now, let us remember him as a man with a wife, children, friends, and admirers whose lives are sadder today and who mourn his loss. RIP.
UPDATE: Well, that didn’t take long. Politico reports that Robert Byrd is proposing changing the name of the health care reform legislation to be named after Kennedy while simulatenously taking a shot at opponents who are “shouting and name calling.” You stay classy, Grand Dragon! Meanwhile, Pants-On-Fire Pelosi is promising that “Ted Kennedy’s dream of quality health care” will be a reality this year and former President Bill Clinton is thanking Kennedy for his “fierce advocacy for universal health care.”
Glad to see that those on the Left can’t let their hero rest without stumping for their cause du jour.