Wednesday, December 31, 2008

NY Dems Tout Bill Clinton (among others) as Caretaker Senator for New York

They just can’t help it. Bill and Hillary Clinton keep seizing the headlines. Yesterday, Hillary was voted the “most admired woman” in America, and Bill came in second after Obama among Democrats as the “most admired man.”

Today, Hill and Bill are headlining the New Year’s celebration in Times Square. And about 46 minutes ago, the AP’s Michael Gormley suggested that we not rule out Bill Clinton as a possible caretaker for Hillary’s soon to be vacated New York senate seat.

Filling Hillary’s seat with a caretaker, Gormley points out, would free Gov. Paterson from the Caroline Kennedy trap.

Gormley writes:

‘“The former president is among several boldface names being touted as possible ‘caretakers’ for New York's Senate seat — people who would serve until the 2010 elections but wouldn't be interested in running to keep the job. As the process of picking Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's replacement gets messier, the option may become increasingly attractive to Gov. David Paterson, who has sole authority to name a successor.

“A big name like Bill Clinton or Democratic former Gov. Mario Cuomo could have an immediate impact for New York in the Senate while letting the large field of hopefuls duke it out in 2010, according to three Democratic Party advisers in New York and Washington who are close to the discussion with Paterson's inner circle on this issue.

“Two others in the party confirmed that Paterson is still considering the caretaker option. The advisers spoke on the condition of anonymity because they weren't authorized to comment.

‘“You could find a very senior person who could serve New York well’’ on an interim basis, said Gerald Benjamin, a political scientist and dean at the State University of New York at New Paltz. Then you can say to Caroline Kennedy, `You know, you'd make a good senator. Run for it.' And you can tell everyone else that it's a level playing field.”

“Paterson has made it clear in recent days that he's getting annoyed by the constant jockeying by supporters of high-powered hopefuls including Kennedy, half a dozen members of Congress and state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, son of the former governor.”

Read more.


  1. Wow, I think this is a fabulous idea ~ and what a plus for New Yorkers too. The whole country would benefit having Pres. Clinton as a caretaker Senator in Hillary's seat temporarily. I think it appropriate that anyone who wants the job campaign and run for it just like Hillary did. That way, the voters ultimately decide, and that would be a good thing for all. The Kennedy name, powerful as it may be, has muddied the waters on this process and that is unfortunate.

  2. Hi Becky,

    Welcome back and a very happy new year to you!