There isn’t a whole lot to like about Massachusetts. The Patriots are cheaters and cocky loudmouths. The Red Sox and their fans have gone from being objects of pity to objects of disdain in the space of five years with their whiny crybaby antics. Even their success has now been called into the question with the slow leak of the Mitchell Report.
But if there’s one thing that Massachusetts does well, it’s politics. Deval Patrick’s gubernatorial candidacy in some ways presaged Barack Obama. And no less a conservative than Mitt Romney once led the People’s Republic of Massachusetts. However, there’s one name that stands above all the rest, even if destined to live on now only in myth.
During the night, the last great flame of the Kennedy family flickered out. Tiny cinders like Patrick Kennedy still dot the political landscape but they fade in comparison to what used to be a towering inferno of political ambition. At least Ted got to go more or less on his own terms, without suffering the same fate as his brothers. But his death is no less devastating, especially since Kennedy had long championed the health care reform that is slowly inching its way through the Congress.
Today people from both sides of the aisle, those who watch FOX news and those who rely on MSNBC, will pay their respects to “The Lion of the Senate” before returning to the partisan war of attrition that defines politics today. And despite all the excitement of divisional races and the upcoming publication of A Magical Mystery Tour (Part II) which will take us deep into the frightening recesses of Jeff’s brain, we here at RSBS also take a step back today to pay homage to Senator Edward Kennedy.