The Rush to Fill Teddy's Seat

Efforts to quickly fill Ted Kennedy's senate seat rather than go through a lengthy special election process are picking up steam. On Wednesday, Gov. Deval Patrick endorsed Kennedy's personal request that the Massachusetts legislature change state laws to allow the governor to temporarily appoint a senator. "I'd like the legislature to take up the bill quickly and get it to my desk and I will sign it," Patrick told the Boston Globe. He added that Sen. Harry Reid called Patrick Wednesday to express concern over "the promptness with which we fill this vacancy," given that health-care legislation and other bills might require every possible Democratic vote to overcome Republican filibusters. Republican state lawmakers are protesting the move to change the law, however, which was already changed in 2004 in an effort to prevent then-Governor Mitt Romney from appointing a Republican to succeed Senator John Kerry if he won the presidency.