More on Caroline Kennedy

Caroline Kennedy measures up:

This is a woman whose capacity matches her charm. She hasn’t held office or paid her political dues but has been the guiding force behind the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library, an author of several scholarly books on privacy as well as best-seller anthologies, and a force in improving the New York school system during Michael Bloomberg’s mayoralty.

I serve on the Kennedy Library’s Profile in Courage committee with her. It is a bipartisan group of senators, distinguished historians and high-powered social activists. Not one, including her Uncle Teddy, is more influential in internal deliberations than Caroline Kennedy.

She has all the qualities – intellectual curiosity; a friendly, at times pointed, sense of humor; and a deferential manner (she hails her own cabs) – that are the stuff to make a good senator.

Some question whether she has sufficient ego for the U.S. Senate; the other New York senator, Charles Schumer, has enough for both.

None of the often-mentioned alternatives to Kennedy, including the New York attorney general, Andrew Cuomo, or Representative Gary Ackerman, possess these qualities. Nor on character do they measure up to her.

Moreover, political pedigrees can be overrated. Few paid more dues than Dick Cheney.

Riding a celebrated family name, he defeated more experienced rivals in both the Democratic primary and the general election.

That was Edward Kennedy in 1962. He has gone on to become one of the most influential senators in the history of the institution.

If she is appointed, neither Caroline Kennedy nor most anyone else today will match her uncle’s accomplishments. Whether she stays for two years or 20, she would add value to an institution that has been so enriched by her family.

Read the whole story here.


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