In a recent diary entry
, Go Vegetarian notes this report
that John Kerry intends to retain his Senate seat throughout the presidential campaign.
Impact? If Kerry holds his seat and takes the White House, Massachusetts Gov. Romney will appoint a GOP Senator to fill Kerry's vacant seat thru Nov. 2006. If Kerry resigns timely (June), a GOP placeholder would fill the seat in a gridlocked Senate only until Nov. 2004.
The time to make an issue of this is now -- in advance of the SuperTuesday primaries.
Forget precedents in history ... control of the Senate now teeters on a hair-thin margin. Forget Kerry's "right to his job" ... this is about results, not rights.
Remaining in the Senate weakens Kerry's own candidacy. He'll be caught in crossfire between missed votes and trap votes contrived by McConnell & Co to fork him on the horns of every imaginable dilemma.
A Kerry candidacy already weakens our Senate prospects in NC, SC, FL, LA, OK, MO ... as well as GA and KY (if suitably contested).
A Kerry win will probably elicit "divided government" ticket-splitting votes elsewhere on the map, as indies and repentent Republicans jump out of the Bush frying pan but hedge their bets against the fire of classic "Massachusetts Liberalism".
Flipping the GOP a free seat in MA simply adds injury to injury ... and raises the prospect of GOP vandals in the Senate making a marginally-equipped post-Bush Democratic POTUS look even more hapless. I can already picture the newsmag fronts on Inauguration week: "Another Failed Presidency?".
I'll raise this with T McA tonite, and with Kerry's Senate colleagues as opportunity permits ... and I urge others to do likewise.