Prior to the 2004 Presidential election, the law in Massachusetts required unexpectedly vacated Senate seats to be temporarily filled by choice of the Governor. John Kerry’s seat would have been vacant if he were elected President, so the Massachusetts legislature simply changed the law — preventing Republican Governor Mitt Romney from possibly appointing a Republican.
Shortly before the late Senator Edward Kennedy’s death, he asked the state legislature to change the law back to what it was — allowing current Democratic Governor Deval Patrick to possibly appoint a Democrat.
In the weeks before Senator Kennedy’s death, he argued that the state of Massachusetts deserved to be fully represented in the U.S. Senate. I agree completely. But the Senator was diagnosed with brain cancer in May, 2008. If he was so devoted to Massachusetts, why didn’t he pressure the legislature to hold a special election in January, 2009 at which time he would step down?