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Thursday, September 24, 2009

Massachusetts GOP Files Suit to Stop Kirk Senate Appointment

George Wenschhof

More health care reform drama unfolds as this seat makes it 60 for the Democrats in the U.S. Senate when Independents Bernie Sanders (Vt.) and Joe Lieberman (Conn.) are added - both caucus with the Democrats.

As I mentioned earlier today, the state Republican Party questioned Democratic Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick's authority to appoint an interim Senator to fill the vacant seat formally held by the deceased Ted Kennedy.

The state legislature yesterday passed legislation allowing the Governor to make the appointment, acting on a request received from the ailing Senator Kennedy prior to his death.

However, the state legislature fell short of the necessary 2/3 vote needed to allow the Governor to make an immediate appointment. Instead, the Governor would need to wait 90 days prior to the appointment, making it somewhat moot as the special election is scheduled for January 19, 2009. The legislation that passed however did allow for an immediate appointment upon a declared emergency by the Governor.

Governor Patrick did declare the emergency and named Paul Kirk this morning. The Senate has already scheduled his swearing in for tomorrow at 3:15 PM. has more here.

The state GOP filed an injunction to stop the appointment at 10:51 AM today. has more here.

Stay Tuned.


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