Former Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis, the 1988 Democratic presidential nominee, may be headed back to the political spotlight as he’s considered a likely interim replacement for Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.).
President Obama is set to tap Kerry to succeed Hillary Clinton as secretary of State, according to media reports.
This means Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick (D) needs to find someone to fill Kerry’s seat until a special election can be held in the late spring or early summer.
Dukakis, who is 79, has remained politically active. He campaigned for Sen.-elect Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) this fall and teaches at Northeastern University.
The Democratic primary for Kerry’s seat will be intense and Patrick is expected to tap someone as an interim replacement who would promise not to run in the special election.
“He’ll most likely appoint a placeholder. A lot of people speculating that’s Mike Dukakis,” said Jim Spencer, president of the Campaign Network, a Boston-based political consulting group. “That’s the most obvious choice. Everybody thinks it’s Dukakis.”
David Paleologos, director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center, said he has heard Dukakis floated as an interim successor along with Vicki Kennedy, the late Sen. Ted Kennedy’s (D-Mass.) widow.
The juxtaposition of “Kennedy” and “floated” in the same sentence seems inappropriate somehow.
But Dukakis, who lost in ’88, to replace Kerry, who lost in ’04, seems entirely appropriate. For more than one reason: