This eRumor began circulating
more than a year prior to Senator Edward (Teddy) Kennedy's death
in August, 2009, but it was revived after he died on August 25, 2009 as
a result of brain cancer.
Serving in the US Senate for the state of Massachusetts from 1962 to
2009, Kennedy championed many controversial and liberal issues from
abortion to immigration reform during his political career.
According to a May 20,
2008 NPR article, after a seizure the Senator was diagnosed with a
malignant t glioma, a form of brain cancer in May of 2008. The article
said that treatment for this form of cancer usually involves surgery,
radiation and chemotherapy.
Some of the points of this email appear to have been taken from a page
about Senator Kennedy on the Who's Who website www.nbdb.com. Some other
comments might have been added by others who forwarded this email.
Click for NBDB site.
Let's look at them
1: Kennedy was caught
cheating at Harvard and expelled twice, once for cheating on a test, and
once for paying a classmate to cheat for him.
Adam Clymer is a
journalist who covered Washington for the New York Times who had been
writing about Ted Kennedy since he played football for Harvard in the
1950's. Clymer wrote a book called, Edward M. Kennedy: a biography
based on personal interviews with the senator as well as published
According to Clymer's book, Kennedy was expelled only once from Harvard,
not twice, and he never paid a classmate to cheat for him.
According to Clymer, it was in 1951 that Kennedy had a fellow student
named Bill Frate take his Spanish exam. Kennedy was concerned his C
-minus grade could result in his removal from the Harvard football team.
Clymer said, there was no monetary compensation for the cheating episode
and as a friend, Frate agreed to take the test in Kennedy's name. Frate
was recognized by a graduate student who proctored the exam when the
exam was handed in. The two were reported to and shortly afterwards
expelled from the university. They were told that they could reapply in
one or two years if their conduct improved. Ted returned to Harvard
after 1953 where he worked harder in his studies and earned an A minus
in Spanish and eventually graduated with a Bachelors degree in 1956.
2. Kennedy enlisted in the
Army for four years. His father, Joseph P. Kennedy, former U.S.
Ambassador to England, intervened to have his enlistment shortened to
two years. Truth!
According to Clymer's
book, Kennedy spent three or four weeks figuring out what he was going
to do after his expulsion from Harvard and on June 25, 1951 enlisted in
the U.S. Army. The Korean War was already a year old and the
young Kennedy, unaware of the student deferment policy signed induction
papers for a four year term. Having already lost a son in
World War II, His father, Joseph Kennedy, was able to intervene in
Teddy's behalf and reduced his hitch in the Army by two years.
3. While in the
Army, Kennedy was assigned to Paris but never advanced beyond the rank
of Private. Truth!
Clymer said that,
after basic training at Fort Dix, in New Jersey Private Kennedy was
assigned to Camp Gordon in Georgia for three months for military police
training. There were a couple of incidents that resulted in a lot of
latrine duty for Kennedy. Among them was a incident when on a cold night
he tried to keep warm using a can of Sterno, a fuel made from jellied
and denatured alcohol. It caused a fire when his sleeping bag ignited.
Once again, at the intervention of Joe Kennedy, the Private was assigned
as part of the honor guard for the headquarters of the North Atlantic
Treaty Organization (NATO) in Paris, France. Kennedy received an
honorable discharge from the US Army in 1953 at the rank of Private.
4. While attending law
school at the University of Virginia , he was cited for reckless driving
four times. Unproven!
Kennedy did attend the
University of Virginia Law School in Charlottesville. His biographer
said that Kennedy “drove wildly and got several speeding tickets.” The
book also said that he once out ran a police car.
5. In 1964, Kennedy was legally
intoxicated when his plane crashed. He hospitalized for several
months. The results of the blood alcohol test remained a "state secret"
until in the 1980's. Fiction!
This makes it sound as
though Kennedy was the pilot and that he was flying drunk. He was a
passenger, however, and alcohol had nothing to do with either Kennedy or
The plane crash happened on June 10, 1964. Kennedy, his wife Joan,
Indiana Senator Birch Baye, Senator Baye’s wife, and Kennedy’s
administrative assistant, Ed Moss, were being flown Washington D.C. to
West Springfield, Massachusetts, the location of the Democratic Party
Convention. The plane struck the ground during an instrument approach
and a later investigation blamed the crash on pilot error.
Kennedy was seriously injured in the crash, spent months in
rehabilitation, and was plagued with back pain for the rest of his life. The eRumor said that
Kennedy had been illegally impaired by alcohol during this crash but Ted
Kennedy but he was not the pilot of this plane. His Blood alcohol level
would have no meaning in any investigation by the Federal Aviation
Administration (FAA), CAB or or National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB)
6. On July 19, 1969, Kennedy
attended a party on Chappaquiddick Island in Massachusetts and later
drove Mary Jo Kopechne home. The car ran off the bridge, flipped,
and into Poucha Pond and Kopechne drowned. It is widely
assumed Kennedy was drunk. Kennedy was given a suspended
sentence of two months. Truth!
This is one of the
most famous incidents in Kennedy’s life. It is true that a car that he
was driving went off a bridge on Chappaquiddick Island on July 19, 1969
and that a young woman named Mary Jo Kopechne died in the accident.
According to Clymer's book, it was a hot July day on the island and
Kennedy had competed in the annual Edgartown Regatta, a sailboat race,
earlier and finished in ninth place out of 31 boats. After the race,
Kennedy returned to his hotel room, soaked his back in a hot bath and
drank a rum and coke. He later went to a reunion of Robert Kennedy
campaign workers which was also attended by Mary Jo Kopechne who worked
for Robert Kennedy as a legislative aide. It is thought that Kopechne
might have been feeling ill from exposure to the sun from the day's
events and Kennedy left the party with her after 11:00 PM to take her
back to the inn where she was staying.
The fatal accident took place a mile and a half from the cottage where
the party was still taking place. The Oldsmobile that Kennedy had been
driving went off the bridge on the right side, overturned and landed in
the pond where it quickly submerged under the water. Kennedy managed to
escape the sinking vehicle but Kopechne didn't
According to published reports, Kennedy stumbled back to the cottage and
two other people from the party then went to the scene of the accident
and tried to rescue Kopechne, but without success. One of the lingering
controversies of the incident is that no one reported it to authorities.
Police learned of it from two fishermen the next morning who happened
upon the scene.
The following day, when the police arrived on the scene and began their
investigation Kennedy told them that he was not sure how he had escaped
the submerged car and that he dove down to to the point of exhaustion
see if his passenger was still in the car.
Clymer wrote that the
crash left Kennedy with a moderate brain concussion which resulted in
memory failure and confusion.
Kennedy was charged with leaving the scene of an accident to which he
pleaded guilty. Kennedy testified in the inquest that he had only drank
two drinks at the party. He was sentenced to 2 months jail time which
8. Kennedy has held his
Senate seat for more than forty years, but his accomplishments seem
According to the
http://www.govtrack.us web site, a civil project that tracks
congressional and senate activities, Senator Kennedy Edward Kennedy
sponsored 380 bills from Jan 14, 1991. and Aug 6, 2009.
At the time of this investigation 273 of these bills are still in
committee and 24 have been successfully enacted. Kennedy also
co-sponsored 2047 bills during this period.
Kennedy was widely regarded as one of the most
powerful senators of his time and below are some of his
recently sponsored bills:
S. 982: Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act Reported by
Committee May 20, 2009
S. 277: Serve America Act Reported by Committee Mar 18, 2009
S. 1405: Longfellow House-Washington's Headquarters National Historic
Site Designation Act Introduced Jul 7, 2009
S. 1152: Healthy Families Act Introduced May 21, 2009
S. 1410: Time for Innovation Matters in Education Act of 2009 Introduced
Jul 8, 2009
S.Res. 36: An original resolution authorizing expenditures by the
Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
Introduced Feb 11, 2009
S. 1580: Protecting America's Workers Act Introduced Aug 5, 2009
S. 1411: Keeping PACE Act Introduced Jul 8, 2009
S. 619: Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act of 2009
Introduced Mar 17, 2009
S. 560: Employee Free Choice Act of 2009 Introduced Mar 10, 2009
S. 540: Medical Device Safety Act of 2009 Introduced Mar 5, 2009
S. 697: CLASS Act Introduced Mar 25, 2009
S. 909: Matthew Shepard Hate Crimes Prevention Act Introduced Apr 28,
S. 882: Drug and Device Accountability Act of 2009 Introduced Apr 23,
S. 717: 21st Century Cancer ALERT (Access to Life-Saving Early
detection, Research and Treatment) Act Introduced Mar 26, 2009
9. Kennedy was prime
instigator and author of every expansion of an increase in immigration,
up to and including the latest attempt to grant amnesty to illegal
aliens. Not to mention the pious grilling he gave the last two Supreme
Court nominees- TRUTH!
According to a
August 27, 2009 CBS News article,
immigration reform was a lifelong cause for Senator Kennedy and he
"dramatically changed the United States' immigration system with the
Immigration Act of 1965, which eliminated the quota system and allowed
immigration from Latin America and Asia to dramatically increase."
The article said, "He also worked to pass the Refugee Act of 1980, and
in 1986 he supported a measure that allowed nearly three million
undocumented immigrants to gain legal status and established penalties
against employers who hired illegal immigrants. He supported the
Immigration Act of 1990, which increased the number of immigrants that
could enter the country, including those who could enter with permanent
job-related visas and temporary worker visas."
In 2007 Senators
Kennedy cosponsored the Comprehensive Immigration Reform Act of 2007
which failed passage.
Because of timing of
the original eRumor, it is believed that the two Supreme Court nominees
mentioned were Chief Justice John G. Roberts (2005) and Samuel A.
Alito (2006). Both justices were appointed by President George W.
Bush, choices which Kennedy did not approve.
The issue of abortion
was the key focus in the confirmation hearing of Judge Alito.
In his closing comments during the hearing, Senator Kennedy said, "He
didn’t back away one inch from his view that a woman’s right to make her
own reproductive decisions is NOT protected under the Constitution.
He didn’t back away from his criticism of the principle of 'one person,
Kennedy added, "And on
the cases he decided, in case after case, we see legal contortions and
inconsistent reasoning to bend over backwards to help the powerful. He
may cite instances in thish he thinks he helped the little guy. But the
record is clear that the average person had a hard time getting a fair
shake in Judge Alito’s courtroom."
After the death of
William Rehnquist on September 23, 2005, President George W. Bush
nominated John G. Roberts to serve as Supreme Court Chief Justice.
confirmation hearings for Chief Justice, Senator Kennedy said, " I do
not believe that John Roberts has met the burden of proof necessary to
be confirmed by the Senate as Chief Justice of the United States. Sadly,
there is ample evidence in John Roberts’ record to indicate that he
would turn the clock back on this country’s great march of progress
toward equal opportunity for all. The White House has refused to release
documents and information from his years in the Reagan Administration
and in the first Bush Administration that might indicate otherwise, but
without those records, we have no way of knowing."
Kennedy added, "John Roberts’s nomination are trying to force a nominee
to adopt our “partisan” positions, to support our “causes,” to yield to
our “special interest” agendas."
Kennedy also said, "Our Senate responsibility to provide advice and
consent on Supreme Court Justices and other nominations is one of our
most important functions. The future and the quality of life in this
nation may literally depend on how we exercise it. If we are merely a
rubber stamp for the President’s nominees, if we put party over
principle, then we have failed in this vital responsibility. Even more
important if we go along to get along with the White House we will be
undermining the trust the Founders placed in us, and we will diminish
the great institution entrusted to our care. Every thoughtful and
reasonable “no” vote is a vote for the balance of powers and for the
Constitution, so we must never hesitate to cast it when our independent
consciences tell us to do so.”
Roberts attended Harvard Law
School where he was managing editor of the Harvard Law Review and after
passing his bar exam, served as a law clerk for William Rehnquist.
Roberts was confirmed as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court and later
swore into office of the President of the United States another former
editor of the Harvard Law Review, Barack Hussein Obama.
10. He is known around
Washington as a public drunk, loud, boisterous and very disrespectful to
ladies- Mostly True!
Kennedy had a
well-known problem with alcohol and in his earlier years was described
by some as a “womanizer” and a “drunk.”
Biographer Edward Klein said Kennedy was “…like the playboy of the
Western world.” Klein said that Kennedy could get attention in his
family by being the clown.
CBS News correspondent Michelle Miller described Kennedy as a prolific
elder statesman on one side and a brazen bad boy on the other.” She also
said that after Kennedy’s first marriage to Joan Kennedy ended in 1980,
his reputation with women and booze spun out of control.
Klein described a drunken incident in Alaska in 1969. He said Kennedy
began yelling “Es-ki-mo Power!” and saying things like “They’re going to
shoot my ass off the way they shot Bobby…” After the trip John Lindsey
of Newsweek called Kennedy family friend Lester Hyman and told him about
the Alaska incident. He said “Your friend Ted Kennedy is in a lot of
He was known for his boisterousness and loudness. He was famous for
spontaneously bursting forth into song---and at a high volume.
In 1991, Time magazine called him a “Palm Beach Boozer” and GQ magazine
described him as “an aging Irish boy clutching a bottle.”
Most credit his second marriage to Victoria Reggie Kennedy in 1992 as
marking a change for the better in his life.