Carolyn, not Caroline (Update)

Rumor on the street is that Caroline Kennedy has expressed interest in stepping into the Senate seat that will be vacated by Hillary Clinton upon her confirmation as Secretary of State and that New York Governor David Paterson has discussed this with Kennedy. I hope that Governor Paterson isn’t seriously considering this pick when there are other women with far greater experience and political records of fighting for every-day Americans.

Governor Paterson is on record for wanting to selected “qualified” woman for top posts, and in fact, blew his stack the other day when no women were nominated to the NY Court of Appeals:

New York Gov. David Paterson said on Wednesday he was “outraged” that no women were nominated to lead the state’s Court of Appeals, its highest court, forcing him to choose from seven men recommended by a panel.


“Because we’re citizens of a state in addition to being public servants, we’re outraged,” Paterson said, adding that the panel’s rejection of more than half the population could discourage women.

“What we really wanted to do is just publicly acknowledge … the disappointing fact that they spanned the globe and couldn’t find a woman in New York state that was qualified to serve as the chief judge,” he said.

Okay Governor, I’m going to hold you to that. I want a qualified woman to take Hillary’s seat, not a symbol. First of all, the seat isn’t owned by the Kennedy clan. It is an elective office and should be filled by someone who has actually been active and involved in politics prior to this election year. It should be filled by someone who hasn’t kept to herself, but instead has put herself on the line and fought for her constituents. Furthermore, if you want the seat to remain in Democratic hands in 2010 when the special election is to be held, you’d better pick someone with a track record of beating Republicans, not a first-timer with no experience in running for office. 

I support Carolyn Maloney to become the next junior Senator from New York. Why? She’s qualified and has spent her life in service. She knows the issues, and has signature issues of her own. 

Her Wikipedia entry. Highlights (italics are direct quotes):

  • Elected to the New York City council in 1982 –She authored legislation creating the City’s Vendex program, which established computerized systems tracking information on City contracts and vendors doing business with the City.
  • Elected to US House of Representatives in 1992 by defeating a 14-year Republican incumbent in a district that had remained highly Republican until 2002.
    • After reports of corruption among military contractors in Iraq and Afghanistan, Maloney later secured passage through the House of her bill to create a database to better monitor all federal contracts
    • Maloney received an “A” on the Drum Major Institute’s 2005 Congressional Scorecard on middle-class issues.
    • Maloney introduced the Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights in the 110th Congress, a measure that drew praise from editorial boards and consumer advocates.
    • Maloney has been active on issues involving women, children and families.
    • [S]he authored and helped secure the enactment into law of a measure to provide federal funding to clear the backlog of rape kits for which evidence had been collected, but never entered into law enforcement DNA databases. It was called “the most important anti-rape legislation ever considered by Congress” by the Rape Abuse and Incest National Network .
    • In 2008, Maloney authored and secured passage through the House of a bill to provide four weeks of paid parental leave to federal employees.
    • She has also authored and introduced the Family and Medical Leave Inclusion Act that would expand the 1993 Family and Medical Leave Act to include couples in domestic partnerships, civil unions, and same-sex marriages.
  • In 2008, Maloney published a book on women’s issues entitled “Rumors of Our Progress Have Been Greatly Exaggerated: Why Women’s Lives Aren’t Getting Any Easier — and How We Can Make Real Progress for Ourselves and Our Daughters

On The Issues (

Her Campaign Site Issues Page


Compare Carolyn Maloney’s record to Caroline Kennedy’s biography (Wikipedia)

She received her B.A. from Harvard University and her J.D. from Columbia Law School, after attending the Brearley School, and Convent of the Sacred Heart in Manhattan, and Concord Academy in Massachusetts.

After interning with her uncle, U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy, and at The New York Daily News, Caroline Kennedy began work at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in 1980, where she met her future husband, exhibit designer Edwin Schlossberg.[2]

Kennedy and Schlossberg were married on July 19, 1986[3] at Our Lady of Victory Church in Centerville, Massachusetts. Kennedy’s maid of honor was her cousin Maria Shriver. She was walked down the aisle by her uncle Ted. Although she is often referred to as Caroline Kennedy Schlossberg, she kept her birth name after her marriage.

Kennedy and her family live on Park Avenue in Manhattan. She and her husband have two daughters and one son: Rose Kennedy Schlossberg (born June 25, 1988 in New York City, she is named after Caroline’s grandmother); Tatiana Celia Kennedy Schlossberg (born May 5, 1990 in New York City, she is named after Edwin Schlossberg’s former colleague, the lithographer Tatiana Grossman, and his grandmother); and John Bouvier Kennedy Schlossberg (born January 19, 1993 in New York City, he is named after President Kennedy). She also owns her mother’s 375-acre (1.52 km2) estate in Aquinnah (formerly Gay Head) on the island of Martha’s Vineyard known as Red Gate Farm.

Kennedy is an attorney, editor, writer and member of the New York and Washington, D.C. bars. She is one of the founders of the Profiles in Courage Award, given annually since 1990 to a person who exemplifies the type of courage examined in her father’s Pulitzer Prize-winning book of the same name. The award is generally given to elected officials who, acting in accord with their conscience, risk their careers by pursuing a larger vision of the national, state or local interest in opposition to popular opinion or powerful pressures from their constituents. In May 2002, she presented an unprecedented Profiles in Courage Award to representatives of the NYPD, the New York City Fire Department, and the military as representatives of all of the people who acted to save the lives of others during the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001.

From 2002 to 2004, Kennedy worked as chief executive for the Office of Strategic Partnerships for the New York City Department of Education. During this time, she helped raise more than $65 million for the city’s public schools. She currently serves as the Vice Chair of The Fund for Public Schools, a public-private partnership founded in 2002 to attract private funding for public schools in New York City.

In addition, Kennedy is currently President of the Kennedy Library Foundation, a director of both the Commission on Presidential Debates and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, and Honorary Chairman of the American Ballet Theatre. She is also an adviser to the Harvard Institute of Politics, a living memorial to her father.

Kennedy has represented her family at the funeral services of former Presidents Ronald Reagan in 2004 and Gerald Ford in 2007, and at the funeral service of former First Lady Lady Bird Johnson in 2007. She also represented her family at the dedication of the William J. Clinton Presidential Center and Park in Little Rock, Arkansas in November 2004.

Because I don’t know where she stands on any issue, I have to look at what she has published:

Kennedy and Ellen Alderman have written two books together on civil liberties:

On her own, she has edited these New York Times best-selling volumes:

Of the two books that she has actually co-written (versus compiling anthologies), the last book was published in 1995, well before the assault on our civil liberties by the current administration. How does she feel about that? I don’t know. Where does she stand on UHC? I don’t know. Where does she stand on wireless wiretapping? I don’t know. The Iraq War? Guantanamo? Energy? I don’t know, I don’t know, I don’t know.  If she want’s to run for Congress, I would welcome her to throw her hat in the ring.

The US Senate needs another woman, just like Hillary, who has fought the good fight all these years and has a clear record. That woman is Carolyn Maloney.


Update: After all she’s done for him, it doesn’t look like Obama is sticking his neck out for Caroline Kennedy.

President-elect Barack Obama deflected a question about whether Caroline Kennedy should take Senator Hillary Clinton’s place representing New York in the Senate when Mrs. Clinton steps down to become secretary of state.

Tom Brokaw, interviewing Mr. Obama on “Meet the Press,” noted there was considerable “buzz” in New York about Ms. Kennedy, who called Gov. David Paterson last week and mentioned the job (although the governor has said she did not expressly say she wanted it).

“Is that a good idea?” Mr. Brokaw asked Mr. Obama.

“Caroline Kennedy has become one of my dearest friends and is just a wonderful American, a wonderful person,” Mr. Obama said. “But the last thing I want to do is get involved in New York politics,” he said, noting that he has enough of that to deal with in his home state of Illinois, which is also looking for someone to fill his senate seat.

Ouch. That’s gotta hurt.

10 thoughts on “Carolyn, not Caroline (Update)

  1. THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I couldn’t AGREE MORE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    There’ is a petition promoting Carolyn Maloney or another “QUALIFIED” Woman to replace Senator Clinton.
    We need Qualified
    Well Connected
    For NYS & the USA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Please take my e-mail from wordpress & I’ll send it to you.
    You also might be able to find it on “? Double Jointed Fingers” web-site.


  2. The problem with that particular petition is it says “appoint a woman” which leaves the door open for Caroline Kennedy, who, while I admire her very much, is NOT qualified to be the junior senator from New York.

    ETA: On closer reading, I see that Carolyn Maloney is mentioned by name in the petition and is. in fact, a petition that I have already signed.

    Here is the link


  3. Excellent post. I could not agree more. If Paterson chooses Caroline over Carolyn, he is going to have a hard time explaining it to women in NY in an election year. Especially this woman.

    As a pundit said on one of the am talk shows – a senate seat is not a family heirloom. Ted Kennedy needs to worry about constituents, not dynasties.


  4. Yes, but the wording states “Qualified”!
    Caroline Kennedy has not met that bar as of yet.
    Feel free to put your own point of view in your entry to the petition & in the “comments” section with your signature.
    Thanks again.
    When it was written there was not the threat of a Caroline Kennedy. It was just a qualified man vs qualified woman issue.
    Thanks again


  5. I suppose Patterson’s decision will depend in part what ambitions he has for higher office. As the backstabbing of Clinton proved, Ted Kennedy and his allies like John Kerry still wield considerable power in intra-party fighting.

    Too bad Kennedy and his cronies don’t use their political clout to fight for more than cosmetic, scraps-to-the-people legislation.


  6. Not Qualified! a Harvard Grad and Columbia Law degree. There are a lot of less qualified men in the Senate. When Carolyn Maloney was first elected you could have said much the same about her. And many said it about Barack Obama.

    There are lots of different routes to Service. I am glad that in light of how we treat each other and our leaders these days that anyone of the quality of Caroline Kennedy would want to be in the Senate.


  7. Not Qualified! a Harvard Grad and Columbia Law degree. There are a lot of less qualified men in the Senate.

    Quite possibly. However, those “less qualifed” were ELECTED.

    I have no problem with Caroline Kennedy. As a matter of fact, she and I are the same age and growing up I closely identified with her. I do have a problem with her being handed a U.S. Senate seat by virtue of her name, having expressed NO INTEREST in electoral politics before this election cycle. She may be all that and a bag of chips, but how can I know when she has no record to run on, nor has expressed any opinion on any important issues she would be expected to address as Senator?

    When Carolyn Maloney was first elected you could have said much the same about her.

    Perhaps, but just like the supposedly “unqualifed” men currently serving in the Senate, she too has been elected and re-elected several times, has a legislative record and has proven herself on her merits (not her name) lo these many years.

    Again, if Caroline Kennedy wants to run for office, I would be thrilled to see her do so. But last I checked the Senate is not the House of Lords.


  8. Caroline Kennedy is a JOKE!!!! Giving her the appointment makes Patterson NO BETTER than Blagojevich. It’s political pay-off, pay-back and expediency. And OBAMA himself should know better than to encourage such a LUDICROUS appointment.

    Carolyn Maloney is a serious candidate who has EARNED the right to this appointment. Let’s hope that Patterson has the common sense and integrity to do the right thing.

    At least we should hope more from him than from BLOOMBERG and his dirty co-horts!


  9. Please let us hope that Gov. Patterson will do the right thing and NOT appoint Caroline Kennedy. She may be a lovely, intelligent woman but that does not give her an entitlement to this important position.

    It should go to a woman – or man – who has worked in the political system, whose positions we know (and who has a public voting record), who supports the electoral process by voting (I’ve heard Caroline Kennedy missed voting in many elections!!!) and has had prior experience running for office.

    Just because she is a Kennedy, or the daughter of a President, or a loyal Obama supporter does not give her the rights to this office. There are MANY public officials more suitable to this position, Carolyn Maloney among them.

    As in the auto industry, legacies and entitlements must end. Caroline Kennedy is not entitled to this position by virtue of her name or her standing in NY social circles.


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