Kennedyism

Matt May adds a biting third part to today’s “recess from history” series inspired by the insipid senior senator from Massachusetts: “A familiar theme to Sen. Kennedy.”
May’s jibe at President Kennedy for the Bay of Pigs goes too far, but I would love to hear Senator Kennedy’s response to it. The spirit of the president who vowed to “bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and success of liberty” long ago passed from the Democratic to the Republican Party.
The true affront John Kennedy presents to Teddy Kennedy is less JFK’s abuse or misuse of power than JFK’s contempt for the leftist platitudes that have become the credal base of the Democratic Party. On the day Lyndon Johnson withdrew from the presidential race in 1968, Midge Decter reminds us in her essay “Kennedyism,” former Minnesota Senator Eugene McCarthy was reported to have observed: “Now Bobby will have to run against his brother Jack.” Teddy Kennedy maintains the tension over the political legacy of JFK that Decter noted in her 1970 essay.

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