The last few weeks has brought a lot of speculation about Caroline Kennedy and her desire to be appointed to the soon-to-be-vacant US Senate seat, currently held by Hillary Clinton (and once the seat of Caroline’s uncle Robert). The biggest gripe that I and many others have is the notion that she deserves the seat just because she is Caroline Kennedy.
But. The reality is, politics and political nepotism are rampant in today’s environment. Who is one of the biggest names after Kennedy seeking this seat? Well, there’s Andrew Cuomo current New York State Attorney General and the son of former New York governor Mario Cuomo (and former cousin-in-law to Caroline through his ex-wife Kerry).
The hard truth around the country is, politics is often a family business. The children are raised in politics. They have the name. They have the connections. I even have to admire the women who chose not to directly invoke the parental name but wind up moving half way or even all the way across the country and run for office using their married names.
I’m not going to provide links for all of these, but here are just a few folks currently or recently in office who followed a parent or grandparent into the family business.
Susan Molinari, former Republican Congresswoman who replaced her father, Guy Molinari as Representative in New York’s 13th CD (Vito Fossela replaced her).
Connecticut Senator Chris Dodd, son of former CT Senator Thomas Dodd.
Representative Ben Chandler, 6th CD of Kentucky, grandson of former Senator, Governor, and Baseball Commissioner A. B. "Happy" Chandler
Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowski, daughter of former Senator and Governor Frank Murkowski (we have Frank’s appointment of Lisa to thank for Sarah Palin)
Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan, daughter of current Illinois Speaker of the House Michael Madigan.
Former governor and now California Attorney General Jerry Brown, son of former CA Governor Pat Brown.
Pennsylvania Senator Bob Casey, Jr son of former PA Governor Bob Casey, Sr
And of course, (soon-to-be ex) President George W, Bush, son of former President George H. W. Bush, grandson of former CT Senator Prescott Bush.
This is just a small sample of those who followed in the "family business." I could list many more from Kentucky, Florida, Alabama, Tennessee, Missouri, Louisiana and just all over that I am aware of (but don’t feel like doing ALL the necessary research on).
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