The Senate bid and the damage done

Why Caroline Kennedy's aborted attempt to replace Hillary Clinton in the Senate may have done permanent harm to her image.

By Rebecca Traister - Mark Schone

Published January 22, 2009 10:10PM (EST)

Ed. note: Even some people close to the Kennedy family are now saying Caroline Kennedy's bid to replace Hillary Clinton in the Senate has hurt her image. "Everything that was special about her got stripped away," one unnamed associate of the political clan told Time magazine. Below, Salon's Mark Schone and Rebecca Traister discuss, via instant message, the implications for Kennedy's future.

RT: this was such a stupid gambit
that it hurt the thing she always had going for her

MS: yes

RT: which was her reputation for class and general likability

MS: the image is gone
if she was going to do this

RT: which was perhaps fostered by the fact that she never opened her mouth

MS: she had to do it

RT: right
this just looks weak

MS: and then become someone new
now she is neither the old or the new
she was a memory, all gauzy
then a disappointing reality
but maybe a senator
now only a disappointing reality

RT: exactly

Rebecca Traister

Rebecca Traister writes for Salon. She is the author of "Big Girls Don't Cry: The Election that Changed Everything for American Women" (Free Press). Follow @rtraister on Twitter.

MORE FROM Rebecca Traister

Mark Schone

Mark Schone is Salon's executive news editor.

MORE FROM Mark Schone

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

War Room