REPORTER: A tired, but triumphant Senator Chris Dodd meets the media just hours after passing health care reform in the Senate, but he is heckled from a passer-by.
JOHN Q. HECKLER: You’re not going to get re-elected.
SEN. CHRIS DODD: And uh – thanks. Merry Christmas!
The news station, WTNH Channel 8 of New Haven, did penance for their coverage of the heckler by smoothly making the transition to a more popular legislator in Connecticut:
REPORTER: And it is clear that for him, this battle was bittersweet.
DODD: Look, I'm an accidental participant, had it not been for the illness and death of Senator Kennedy, I'd been a vote on the bill and a vote on the committee.
REPORTER: Dodd says immediately after it passed, he went to visit Kennedy’s grave. He says he knows the Massachusetts Democrat would have wanted more. The Senate version does not include a public option. But because he was a great legislator, Kennedy would have appreciated pushing it through.
In other words, three cheers for Sen. Dodd – close, personal friend of the late Ted Kennedy! And if Teddy wanted this bill to pass, it’s certainly okay for Dodd to help pass it.
Now it was probably not a very nice thing for that constituent to inform Sen. Dodd of his impending retirement. That said, when you have to lean on the legacy of the Kennedys to boost your political fortunes, it must look bleak indeed.