Jimmy Carter is so mad he’s spitting peanut shells. In an effort to buoy a dismal legacy, Carter resurrected the “Lion of the Senate” from a saintly sarcophagus to blame the dead senator for delaying comprehensive health coverage for three decades.
In a “60 Minutes” interview with Leslie Stahl Jimmy claimed, “The fact is that we would have had comprehensive health care now, had it not been for Ted Kennedy’s deliberately blocking the legislation that I proposed.” Carter asserts that if it wasn’t for Kennedy, who is viewed as the “champion of the recent health care legislation,” Americans would already have comprehensive care and Carter policy would be the reason why.
Imagine how a failed ex-president must feel seeing Ted Kennedy, who Carter says “deliberately blocked” health care legislation, receiving kudos for being “a lifelong champion for universal health care.” Jimmy Carter obviously feels the need to set the record straight, to thwart a dead Kennedy from getting credit for a policy he prevented from passing while Carter was in office.
In the “60 Minutes” interview, Jimmy Carter exhibits unbridled disdain for the late Senator, claiming that 30 years ago, “Ted Kennedy killed the bill” and that the Massachusetts senator’s suppressing health care was a mean political tactic.
At the time, Kennedy and Carter were both vying for the Democratic presidential nomination so, according to Carter, Kennedy blocked health care “out of spite.” During the post-mortem assault, Jimmy accuses Teddy of not wanting to see him have “a major success in that realm of life.”
Pretty nasty stuff! Carter claims Kennedy undermined people-friendly policy to further his presidential aspirations. Jimmy should have insisted the Stahl interview be conducted while strolling across Dike’s Bridge, where Carter could have explained how “Kennedy killed the bill,” driving home an observable point.
Carter reveals that while liberals lit votives at the altar of St. Teddy, he was keeping a journal chronicling the Massachusetts senator’s unflattering behavior. Carter penned in his diary, “Kennedy continuing his irresponsible and abusive attitude, immediately condemning our health plan.”
Is a peanut farmer from Georgia daring to accuse Hyannis Port royalty of “abusive…irresponsible…spiteful” behavior? Doesn’t Jimmy know that dearly departed Ted was a consummate gentleman, always ready to transport young women safely to any destination? To suggest Teddy Kennedy quashed health care reform fails to credit the deceased senator as a “people friendly person” who always put the well being of others ahead of his own welfare.
The interview proved that Carter is desperate to be credited with something – anything, be it health care reform, or as the architect of a never adopted, money-saving energy conservation program. For many reasons, Jimmy Carter’s presidency was, and is still, considered abysmal. Yet at this late date a departed senator could redeem Jimmy’s forlorn legacy.
President Carter’s truthful “60 Minutes” expose of Kennedy’s willingness to “kill” to advance a political career has shed new light on Mr. Poucha Pond’s malicious nature and could turn out to be the most glorious political achievement of Carter’s fifty-year career.