CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Caroline Kennedy just finished speaking to the Democratic National Convention and, very obviously, won the hearts of the delegates and television audience.
With a polished delivery and not a single pause or a mis-step, the 55-year-old New York lawyer was cheered with passion by the convention delegates. And what many obviously felt was, if only Caroline Kennedy could have spoken so well in 2008, she might have secured the appointment to Hillary Clinton‚??s Senate seat.
At the time, Kennedy was widely boomed as the appointed successor to Clinton, who had just been named as Barack Obama‚??s secretary of state. Her uncle, the late Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-Mass.), reportedly called then-New York Gov. David Paterson to lobby on behalf of his niece for the appointment.
However, in a major televised interview, the daughter of John and Jacqueline Kennedy rambled, spiced her answers with ‚??uhs‚?Ě and did not speak well at all. Her lack of prowess as a speaker was widely reported and within days, Paterson gave the appointment to present Democratic Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand.
In her remarks Thursday, the daughter of the 35th president praised President Obama, whose 2008 campaign she and her family supported early, and invoked the name of her father, a beloved icon in the Democratic Party. Touching on her father‚??s assassination a year before he was set to seek re-election, the 55-year-old Kennedy said ‚??my father couldn‚??t be a candidate for re-election,‚?Ě but his work was carried on by ‚??his brothers and others.‚?Ě Sounding very much like her father in his 1961 inaugural address, she then gave a stirring call for action to this generation of Americans.
Shortly after her interview, her son John Kennedy Schlossberg — JFK‚??s only grandson and son of Caroline and husband Ed Schlossberg — gave his first-ever interview, to CNN. Already the talk of the Yale sophomore, who looks so much like his grandfather, has begun. On the same evening, Caroline‚??s cousin Joseph P. Kennedy, III won the Democratic primary in Massachusetts for the seat of retiring Rep. Barney Frank.
Had Caroline Kennedy spoke four years ago as she did in Charlotte Thursday night, she might well have come to this convention as ‚??Sen. Kennedy.‚?Ě But it now appears as though time has passed her by for the next generation of Kennedys.