It seems as if Senator-Select Caroline Kennedy's (D-NY) selection as NY state's newest senator, to fulfil the remaining term of Secretary of State-designate Senator Hillary R. Clinton (D), is not quite the shoo-in Ms. Kennedy and her supporters thought it would be.
Speaking to reporter Tom Precious of the Buffalo News, New York Governor David Paterson (D) seemed to express annoyance at the presumed pressure he has had to select Kennedy. Buffalo, though it is in the same state as the city of New York , is hundreds of miles away physically and thousands of miles away culturally from Kennedy's Manhattan (NY City's most famous borough) home and her "Camelot" subjects.
"The notion that I have to take Caroline is not coming from me," Paterson said in an interview in his Capitol office with The Buffalo News. He said "gossip" has become a "greater force right now than my decision."
"What I would say is that, to the media, it's Caroline and the others. To me, it's there are 10 to 15 good candidates," said the governor, (snip)
"One thing that helps her is the tremendous attention that you all give her works to her advantage. Maybe if you didn't give her so much attention she wouldn't have it," Paterson said. He said certain people, such as Clinton, have an advantage "just because of who they are."
"So I would ask the question back, why do you all pay so much attention to her? She's just another person. So what? Her name is Kennedy? Why do you pay so much attention to her? I'm not reacting to what I think, I'm reacting to what I see," he said.
"But, on the other hand, her lack of elected experience does not help her, but the point is it's the combination of experiences I'll look at in terms of all the candidates, and also how balanced the ticket would look," Paterson added.
Kennedy's less than impressive recent appearances touring the region, answering only submitted pre screened questions, may have led the area's residents to hope for a candidate from their district such as Rep. Brian Higgins (D) who filled out the governor's questionnaire.
Higgins said he believed his name was floated because of his years in the state Legislature and Congress and because of some pressure Paterson is getting to appoint an upstater to the job. All the major government power players in New York -- including the governor and heads of the state Legislature -- are from New York City.
"The whole state Democratic ticket is going to be up in 2010, and there is a void, and that is representation from the upstate region," Higgins said at the time. "If Western New York is not in the mix, I think it poses a challenge for state leaders coming here in 2010 looking for support. Historically, Western New York has proven to be very pivotal" in statewide contests.
Diversity and equal representation are important also -- even for New Yorkers..