June 22, 2004


Filling Kerry's shoes (Renee Loth, June 22, 2004, Boston Globe)

Our story so far: Democrats are trying to change a nearly century-old law in order to prevent Governor Romney from filling the Senate seat that will be vacant should Kerry become president. The Democrats gravely speak of ``letting the people decide,'' trying to claim the high ground in an argument that involves nothing but partisan swamp.

The ``reformers'' over at Romney Inc., meanwhile, are trying to sweeten their own power grab by hinting broadly that the governor would appoint a woman or minority to the post, loosening the white-boy stranglehold on the congressional delegation. (Apparently Barney Frank's status as a gay man doesn't earn any points in this diversity varsity.)

Fearful of letting a Romney designee earn two years of incumbency before the next statewide election in 2006, Democrats want a special election, probably sometime in February 2005. They are pushing legislation on Beacon Hill that would negate the system in effect since 1913, when the 17th Amendment to the US Constitution was ratified, providing for the popular election of US senators.

Mr. Romney will get to fill the seat far sooner than that. Most likely with Paul Cellucci who would hold it easily in the following election. Though Mr. Romney might prefer to name someone who wouldn't be an automatic presidential and vice-presidential rival.

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 22, 2004 9:06 AM

I do not share your optimism - Kerry is not going to resign anytime soon, and unless there is a major case of 'shame-whup' put on them, the Democrats will do what they want. If Romney's veto cannot hold, a Democrat will fill the seat, probably even sooner than Feb. 2005.

Posted by: jim hamlen at June 22, 2004 10:16 AM

I have become too cynical to believe that the normal course of events - Romney appoints a replacement for Kerry - will survive the Dem efforts to hold the Senate seat in any way possible. I do agree Celluci seems the most obvious replacement but I can't see him as a serious national candidate.

Posted by: AWW at June 22, 2004 2:44 PM

Celluci can take the election if he runs even
if there is no interim appointment.

Posted by: J.H. at June 22, 2004 2:55 PM

Kerry will never vacate the seat and after Nov this will be a non issue. Kerry will lose the election and stay as Senator. Let Boston have him. They deserve him.

Posted by: retired military at June 24, 2004 7:24 PM