Ted Kennedy, Beloved Senator, Addresses the Faithful

Ted Kennedy, half of his silver hair missing from intense chemotherapy, made it to the podium tonight in Denver. He delivered a rousing speech that reaffirmed my belief that he is indeed an admirable man who has spent nine terms as a Senator working for worthy and just causes.

I haven’t been a Kennedy voter that many times. I’ve cast my votes against him, here in Massachusetts, yet tonight I admit that I admire him and felt a tear coming on thinking that the senator is on his last months of his life.

With a brain tumor recently removed, and now fighting the ravages of the most dreaded of diseases, here he was–hardy, brave, speaking in a strong and forceful way as he has done for decades. He has been described as possibly the most effective senator who ever walked the halls of Congress. Whether you agree with him or not, he’s the one who forces legislation through, he is the one who knows how the power works and who has forged alliances with GOP senators he disagreed with, all to get some legislation done. These compromises are the way it works in politics, and why I was so disappointed in Deval Patrick, who, when the fight was needed to be fought, took his limo to New York to sign a book contract.

Patrick’s no Ted Kennedy. Indeed, there is nobody like him. Tonight’s Democratic convention will always be known as the one where Ted Kennedy rallied, against doctor’s orders, to come speak to the people who love and admire him. When he said he was so happy to be right here, in Denver, I believed him. And I do hope that in January 2009, Ted gets a chance to witness Barack Obama being sworn in and that he can fight for health care and the many other causes he has fought for once again.