The Kennedy family has come out swinging against failed Massachusetts Senate candidate Martha Coakley, who lost the race to succeed Ted Kennedy.
Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, niece of Ted Kennedy, has told the Daily Beast bluntly that Coakley did not campaign enough.
“You’ve got to fight,” Townsend said. “That’s why Ted Kennedy was so great on jobs and health care and taking on the special interests. . . Coakley was a candidate who apparently said she didn’t want to be cold,” Townsend says.
"That was such a strange thing to say,” referring to the statement that Coakley made that she preferred to campaign among elected officials behind doors rather than get out and meet people.
Vicki Kennedy is also said to share Kathleen Kennedy's anger at how the race ended, with Republican upstart Scott Brown's surprise victory.
She called Coakley right after the Attorney General won the Democratic nomination on December 8th and volunteered to campaign for her. Coakley never asked her to.
She reached out to Coakley again and was told abruptly that she could fundraise if she wanted to do something. Kennedy apparently was gobsmacked.
In the end Kennedy received a call from David Axelrod at the White House as the Coakley campaign became mired in deep trouble.
Axelrod asked her what was going on and was flabbergasted to learn she had not been asked to campaign.
The Lion of the Senate's widow explained that Coakley did not want her on the schedule but the White House intervened and insisted she take part.
It was too late however, and Coakley lost. Vicki Kennedy is said to be furious that her husband's major priority until the day he died, health care reform, is now unlikely to pass.