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Entries in Ted Kennedy (2)

Wednesday
Sep052012

Caroline Kennedy: Ted Would Be 'Tremendously Proud' of Obama

ABC/Rick Rowell(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) -- A video celebrating Ted Kennedy's career in politics played Tuesday evening during the Democratic National Convention. Although it has been three years since the "Lion of the Senate" lost his battle with brain cancer, the man behind the booming voice that enthusiastically endorsed Barack Obama in 2008 is still a force in the 2012 campaign.

The crowd at the convention especially loved the part of the tribute that showed Ted Kennedy debating Mitt Romney during the 1994 Senate campaign.

"It was just so classic Teddy that he was somehow able to appear and be relevant again and again," Caroline Kennedy, the daughter of President John F. Kennedy, told ABC News anchor David Muir. "We saw that with health care, it was such a tremendous achievement of the president to get that done, and then last night when he popped up debating Mitt Romney, it really made me smile."

For Caroline Kennedy, 54, who is scheduled to speak Thursday at the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., this is the first convention she's attended in more than a decade without her uncle.

"The last, I guess, three conventions I introduced my uncle Teddy so that was a lot fun for us. ... I was just honored to be able to do that," Kennedy said. "I miss him, and I think the video last night shows that many other people feel the same way, so that was a really nice chance to reconnect with his spirit and feel inspired by it all over again."

Kennedy endorsed Obama with her uncle in 2008.

"I have never had a president who inspired me the way people tell me that my father inspired them," she wrote in an op-ed for The New York Times. "But for the first time, I believe I have found the man who could be that president -- not just for me but for a new generation of Americans."

Today, almost four years into Obama's presidency, Kennedy said she still felt as inspired as she did on the day she endorsed him and said she was ready to campaign for him again.

"I think he did a tremendous job bringing our economy back from such a difficult, difficult recession, and our country is safe, we're getting out of the wars, the auto industry is coming back, he's done a lot on education," Kennedy told Muir. "I can go down the list. ... I really always find it puzzling when people sort of ask, you know, what has he done, because anyone else who'd done that much could pretty much take it easy, but he needs four more years to keep it going."

As for what her uncle would think of Obama's first term, Kennedy said he would be pleased.

"I think he'd be tremendously proud of all of that President Obama has accomplished," Kennedy said. "I think he really saw someone who would carry the work forward on the issues he cared about, and I think that he would be thrilled to be here if he could."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Sunday
Jan022011

For the Kennedys: The End of an Era

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The sun has set on the Kennedy era. When Congress reconvenes next week, it will be the first time in 64 years that there has not been a Kennedy in office.

The last Kennedy -- Patrick, a congressman from Rhode Island -- has officially left the building, saying, "my life is taking a new direction and I will not be a candidate for reelection."

His father, Sen. Edward Kennedy, the liberal lion of the Senate, died in 2009. Now, the new frontier on Capitol Hill has a distinctly Republican flavor. Replacing the Kennedys as the only father-son team on the Hill are Rep. Ron Paul and Senator-elect Rand Paul, both Tea Party Republicans.

John F. Kennedy launched the family franchise in 1947 when, at age 30, he joined the U.S. Congress. He spent six years as a congressman and eight years as a senator, fighting for civil rights and social welfare. In 1961, he moved to the White House, famously calling on Americans to, "Ask not what your country can do for you, but what you can do for your country." He brought with him his two brothers in to the political fray: Robert became attorney general and then senator, and Ted would be elected to the Senate too.

The attention attracted to the family's glamour, intellect and occasional scandal would last decades and help propel Ted Kennedy to serve almost 47 years in Congress. He championed Medicare, rights for the disabled, and health care reform. His son, Patrick, and Robert's son, Joe, also followed in the Kennedy footsteps serving as Congressmen.

It's a legacy of triumph, tragedy and a national fascination with Democratic Party's first family. John and Robert were both assassinated, and Ted Kennedy famously pleaded guilty to leaving the scene of a deadly car accident at Chappaquiddick.

Still, there is a new generation of young Kennedys who have yet to pick up the torch of public service. It's possible the sun has not set on Camelot for good.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio