Who Should Be Nominated to New York's Junior Senate Seat?

With Hillary Clinton slotted to become the next Secretary of State that will leave NY’s junior senate seat open. Per the Constitution the Governor of NY, David Paterson, will then place someone into the seat to finish out the current Senate term.

Names are being thrown around with great abandon, and I’d be ranting and venting about this in the Pit - except that I really do trust Paterson to try to do his best by the people of NY, and Blagojevich’s example has left me feeling simply tired and depressed.

Some of the names that I’ve seen bruited about include RFK Jr. and Caroline Kennedy. Both of whom seem to be being suggested solely because there must be a Kennedy back in the Senate with Teddy’s impending loss. This strikes me as a hugely bad idea. Of course that’s greatly modified from my initial reaction. I tend to be prejudiced, hugely, against the Kennedy clan, and the idea of political families disgusts me, anyways.

But RFK Jr. at least isn’t a complete unknown, and more importantly from my point of view - he’s not a current NY State legislator. IMNSHO none of those bastards are fit for the offices they currently hold, and none should be considered for any higher office, either. Caroline Kennedy is a bit more palatable - her work with the NYC schools certainly seems laudable from what I have read about it. But, by the same token, she seems like she’d be NYC’s Senator not a representative of the wider interests of the state as a whole.

Again, either of those Kennedy scions would be more palatable than anyone from the State Assembly, or the State Senate.

I think that our current State Attorney General, Andrew Cuomo, might be a better match - he’s at least already a state-wide figure with a fairly good reputation in his own right, and none of the arguments for his nomination are based on his last name, for all that his father’s position did help start his career.

I’d nominate my US Rep, but she’s old (pushing 80) and already has several powerful committee positions, including chair of the Rules committee. I don’t think she’d want the position - for all that I am convinced she’d do a good job.

There is some talk that I’ve seen suggesting that since currently all the state-wide leadership positions are being held by NYC/LI people (Governor, Senators, Senate Majority Leader, and State Assembly Speaker) an effort should be made to find a replacement Senator who would be seen as having some concern about upstate interests. I don’t know whether that would be feasible without going to the State Legislature - which is a broken reed.

In short: Who do you like to be nominated to finish out NY’s junior Senator’s term?

This sounds like an IMHO question, so to answer it as such, I’m all for Caroline Kennedy. She’s smart, articulate, worldly, compassionate, is clean as a whistle, has no prior baggage other than her name, which for some reason is like kryptonite to right wingers (but who cares what right wingers think?), was born in New York City and has deep ties to the state, has a world of contacts at her fingertips for advisers and general information, is a top-notch fundraiser, would easily win re-election if she’s even halfway decent, and brings with her a bounty of good will. That, and she’s classy as hell and probably elevates everyone who comes in contact with her by them not wanting to seem like chumps in comparison.

What’s not to love? Sure, there will be grumblings, but if she wants it, that means she thinks she can do a good job and is not wanting it as a vanity position. Give her a chance for the next two years. To disregard her advantages solely because of her name is short-sighted and despicable.

But then, I’m not from New York and have no legitimate say in the matter. My opinion means dick and I know that. I’d just like to see it happen.

It’d be a nice change of pace if they nominated somebody from New York.

Other than that, I’m open. I haven’t been sold on any candidate, since so far, people are only nattering about whether Paterson MUST nominate a woman or a member of a minority group, because those are certainly the only important factors. :rolleyes: Like you, I’d prefer a political appointment to a celebrity one - preferably someone from the NY Congressional delegation rather than the state legislature.

I almost want it to be RFK Jr., however, just so Obama won’t fuck up by putting him in charge of the EPA.

I’ll do it.

Washington, right?

Some say she has less “experience” for the position than Sarah Palin had for the vice-presidency. In some ways, The Nanny has betters qualifications than Caroline Kennedy. At the very least, Fran Drescher would never be known as a wallflower.


Fran Drescher?

We have to find a way to put a stop to this.

I know nothing of her politics, but we cannot endure having that voice on national television ever again.

Well, for one, the way it’s been reported in most of the press I’ve seen, it’s all been about her name, not her accomplishments. And no one’s name should be a ticket for getting into the Senate. That it has been sufficient in the past doesn’t mean that I think it is sufficient, now.

Build arguments for Caroline Kennedy based on her accomplishments, and I’ll listen very carefully. As I suggested in my OP - I can be convinced she would be the best choice. (Though, a large part of that is because I’m throwing out 90% of the state politicians as being not worth the powder to blow them to Hell.)

Build arguments based solely on her blood relationship to her father, or uncle, and I’m going to be hugely antagonistic.

Can you imagine if Fran Drescher got the NY seat and Palin won the Alaska seat? And they engaged in a debate on the Senate floor? Owww, the ears!

I’ve mentioned before that Fran is my cousin, haven’t I?

You, sir, should be ashamed of yourself - building up Doomsday scenarios solely for the purpose of causing terror and panic in the streets!
From ghoulies and ghosties. And long-leggedy beasties. And dueling voices that grate and whine in the Senate, Good Lord, deliver us!

ETA: Marley23, you have almost sold me on an RFK Jr. appointment. :wink:

Cuomo may be chosen for pragmatic political reasons. He’s often been mentioned as a possible challenger to Paterson for the Democratic Gubernatorial nomination in 2010. Paterson may decide to divert him to a good job in Washington rather than face him as a rival in Albany.

For two years? Why not Mario Cuomo?

I am sure Paterson and the NY Democrats would prefer somebody who’s in a good position to run for re-election, and at 76, that’s probably not Cuomo.

I wouldn’t actually mind Fran Drescher. I think George Will was right when he said on this week’s This Week that a Senate seat is not a family heirloom. But then, I’m opposed to the designated hitter rule as well.

(Not that it matters, as I live in Missouri. But if I lived in NY, I’d root for the Mets.)

Well, Palin talks kinda like Garrison Keillor, which ain’t that bad. But Drescher . . . I just wanna dump her in a shallow grave on top of Randi Rhodes and that chick who played Chandler’s early-in-the-series girlfriend. “Oh! My! God!” In fact, isn’t there some way we could give the whole Borough of Queens back to the Dutch or the Indians? Or the Martians?

As an Upstate New Yorker for a few months shy of fifty years, I very much like the idea of Andrew Cuomo. He’s experienced in Washington from his work with HUD, known widely and liked upstate for the Erie Canal Corridor Revitalization Project which he pushed hard for, and well liked downstate for his work during the Bush-43 years.

The last thing the Democrats should do is foster the old Upstate/Downstate division again by nominating someone with NYC-only (or Upstate-only) credentials. And frankly, no other name stands out as having statewide recognition and appeal.

One of the things that endeared Hillary to New Yorkers is that, while she was in some senses a carpetbagger at first, she set about to connect with every region of the state. My grandfather was in politics back in the 1950s, and I grew up aware of New York’s political climate. In the 50 years I lived in my home town (or, for a couple of years each, two other upstate cities), neither U.S. Senator from New York ever came there unless it was part of a whirlwind blanket-the-state last-days-of-campaign tour. Hillary campaigned there, the4n came back and connected with the local leaders after she’d won. Quite literally, by doing that she won the hearts and loyalty of most of a formerly rockbound Republican county. That is a working politician doing her job.

Polycarp, I’d seen Andrew Cuomo mentioned before but thought he was suffering from HUD’s perceived portion of culpability in the subprime mess. I’m pretty far removed from NY politics though so is that not the case?

Bonkin’ Bill Clinton.

Well sure, if Garrison Keillor was torturing a cat while he spoke. Palin’s speaking voice is like fingernails on a chalkboard to me.

I’d say Caroline Kennedy for all the reasons Equipoise mentioned. She’s a lawyer, active in a lot of Kennedy Library and NYC public schools causes, and an author of three books and editor of four. She’s tight with the President-elect. I think New Yorkers could be proud of her as their new U.S. senator.

BTW, it’s an appointment, not a nomination.