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January 4th, 2010
05:00 PM ET

Are political dynasties good for the U.S.?

ALT TEXT

The Kennedys in a 1935 photograph. (PHOTO CREDIT: LIFE.com)

FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:

Politics just might run in the blood in the United States.

Political dynasties have a long history... from families like the Adamses, the Roosevelts, the Kennedys... to the Bushes and the Clintons.

And the newspaper "The Hill" reports the 2010 elections will be no exception - with the offspring of some well-known politicians trying to follow their relatives into power. Experts suggest if you have a famous and beloved name... it's "an advantage you don't want to throw away."

Some of the potential political dynasties in the making include:

  • Rory Reid, the son of senate majority leader Harry Reid ... who is running for governor of Nevada. In this case though, the name could hurt him. His father is facing a tough re-election battle and has pretty dismal poll numbers. Maybe that's why there are no scheduled events for the two Reids to campaign together.
  • Rand Paul, the son of Congressman and former presidential candidate Ron Paul... is running for the Republican nomination for Kentucky's Senate Seat.
  • Robin Carnahan is running to replace Kit Bond in the U.S. Senate. Her father was the late Democratic governor of Missouri Mel Carnahan... and her mother, Jean Carnahan, served as senator.
  • Others include Ethan Hastert, son of former Republican House Speaker Denny Hastert who is running for his father's old seat; Jason Carter, grandson of the former president; and Beau Biden - son of the vice president. Biden hasn't said yet if he'll run for his father's old senate seat in Delaware.

Here’s my question to you: Are political dynasties good for the U.S.?

Interested to know which ones made it on air?

Mike from New York writes:
Jack, dynasties create a sense of entitlement. Remember the recent mess when Carolyn Kennedy was 'campaigning' to be appointed to fill Hillary's Senate seat? There was an expectation that even with no qualifications, the name was qualification enough. It seems that rarely does the talent get transferred in the genetic crap shoot.

Gigi from Minneapolis writes:
Having a famous name is not going to insure a seat in the Senate or Congress. Hubert Humphrey's son and grandson have both tried and have not been successful. I see nothing wrong with a candidate with a famous name running for an office if they are qualified.

Robert writes:
Every time I hear the word "Jeb", I have a panic attack.

Dennis from Columbus, Ohio writes:
Come on now, Jack, you know it’s good for our country. The siblings don’t have to waste time getting to know all those important contacts. They can go straight to work pleasing the rich powerbrokers.

Omar writes:
It is true that in a democratic nation such as ours, political dynasties should not exist, but in certain cases (such as the Kennedys) some families have the power to truly change our country and the world for the better.

Al writes:
We have become a nation of political inbreeding. Look where it's gotten us! We need to stop it!

Sam from Iowa writes:
Why not? At least they know the ropes!

Paul writes:
No, they are the antithesis of the ideals of America. America was built on not having a monarchy. Having family political dynasties only breeds incompetence, stagnation, decline, and corruption.

Tom from Iowa writes:
Dynasties are fine as long as the name involved is not Bush or Palin.


Filed under: Government • Kennedy family • Washington
soundoff (154 Responses)
  1. Michael & Diane M Phoenix AZ

    NOT at all! Then it is all more of the "rich getting richer" at the expense of the working stiffs.

    January 4, 2010 at 2:15 pm |
  2. Jaime from Plantation, FL

    Dynasty for Dynasty's sake is never a good thing. A pure meritocracy would yeild the best results, but since we are imperfect creatures of habit more pleased with familiarity than competence, we will have to live with and suffer the consequences of virtual dynasty.

    January 4, 2010 at 2:18 pm |
  3. Loren, Chicago

    Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. How can political dynasties be good for anyone when all they are is a perpetuation of power? Daley in Chicago? All he has done is help his cronies make money off the city through shoddy and over-priced work. The Kennedys? They've proven themselves good at giving away other people's money, don't see them taking a vow of poverty. George Bush? Enough said. The Caesars proved why dynasties are a bad idea, we should learn from history.

    January 4, 2010 at 2:23 pm |
  4. JENNA

    Are political dynasties good for the U.S.?

    Depends on the dynasty.

    History has proven that the Bush dynasty was BAD, Kennedy dynasty was GOOD.

    Jenna
    Roseville CA

    January 4, 2010 at 2:26 pm |
  5. Willow, Iowa

    Do you mean like Kennedy, Roosevelt, Bush, etc.? I love to see someone on the news named Kennedy or Roosevelt. Bush? Not so much.

    January 4, 2010 at 2:36 pm |
  6. John from Alabama

    Jack: The Kennedy's never hurt this nation, but the Bush Administrations were for the rich, of the rich, and by the rich folks. During the Bush years we went to war on supplemental funding. I guess George did not know how to use the budget process. It is the economy stupid!!! We went from $ 5 trillion deficit to an $11 trillion deficit after just 8 years of President George W. Bush. The Republicans would like forget the Bush Legecy, but historians will not let them.

    January 4, 2010 at 2:38 pm |
  7. Joanne B

    It's stupid in the USA.
    Joanne B
    Mn

    January 4, 2010 at 2:40 pm |
  8. cy

    Sen Prescott Bush was suspected of business dealings with the Nazis. The dynasty went swiftly downhill from there. Draw your own conclusions. cy from arlington,va

    January 4, 2010 at 2:41 pm |
  9. Tom in Desoto, Tx

    Absolutely not. Who said any one family has the corner on intelligence? Numerous Kennedy's and the Bush's have demonstrated they don't by way of their actions. If you have a well known name that alone could start a politican dynasty. Try this one on for size, "...and this politican dynasty all began with Paris Hilton"

    January 4, 2010 at 2:47 pm |
  10. Jayne in NH

    It depends on the motives of the dynasty. The Kennedys, for example, have always been service oriented. The Bush family, on the other hand, has seemed more interested in profiteering. Either way, wouldn't it be nice if the average, nondynasty person could successfully run for public office? I guess it won't happen until money grows on trees.

    January 4, 2010 at 2:50 pm |
  11. Emden (Deep in the Heart of Hurst Texas)

    So what If people continue voting these family members into office, as long as they honestly perform the duties of that office.

    The recent attempt to get Caroline Kennedy into an office failed because she was unable to convice those in power and those who she would represent that she had sufficient experience and understanding of the office to be effective.

    Remember all it takes it one bad scandal to ruin a family's reputation.

    January 4, 2010 at 2:53 pm |
  12. John - Texas

    As good as tooth ache...

    January 4, 2010 at 2:53 pm |
  13. Russ in PA

    Look where dynasties have brought us: to ruin. People need to demand that Washington follow the Constitution to the letter.

    January 4, 2010 at 2:54 pm |
  14. Melissa

    They aren't good or bad.

    January 4, 2010 at 2:55 pm |
  15. Fred R DeLeon SR

    ABSOLUTELY NOT for a Democratic system like ours.
    Dynasties come into existence in financial and artistic worlds.
    We are not an empire. By the way if may I add.....Reelection shoud be
    wipe out from our laws. And NO LIFE TIME JOBS.

    January 4, 2010 at 3:11 pm |
  16. Tom Bayliss, Bradenton,FL

    You can answer that for yourself Jack. You asked today about what led to the demise of the US economy. There is your answer.

    January 4, 2010 at 3:12 pm |
  17. A. Smith, Oregon

    The Bush Family legacy is one of the most horrific examples of political abuse ever recorded in American history that was heaped upon the broken backs of the American people.

    No laws, no constitutional restraints, its Bush speak or nothing!

    January 4, 2010 at 3:13 pm |
  18. Ed

    They had not been necessarily bad for the country in the past; however, then came George W. Bush.

    Ed
    Texas

    January 4, 2010 at 3:33 pm |
  19. Troy Fairview, Texas,

    Jack I think dynasties are a wonderful thing for people that know what they are doing like Beer makers and Bakers. They have a skill that provides a valuable service that generation after generation can feast on and enjoy. Unfortunately politicians do not. They are more like parasites who once they find a host they feast on it consuming it bit by bit until the host dies. Then they move on to another host to repeat the process. Politicians should have term limits on all positions with no benefits after their term is completed.

    January 4, 2010 at 3:35 pm |
  20. Tina Tx

    We are quickly becoming like our ancestral homeland. Most of us came from England. We already are getting cameras to catch red light runners, cameras on the street to watch your every move and now we are trying to get universal healthcare for all except we have too much greed for great healthcare. The queen of England on the other hand is useless so what is your point?

    January 4, 2010 at 3:43 pm |
  21. Jane (Minnesota)

    Just look at what the Bushes left us – in one word NO!!!!!

    January 4, 2010 at 3:43 pm |
  22. Ed from California

    There's nothing wrong with political dynasties, as long as those dynasties put the welfare of American first. Where it really goes wrong when it becomes a "political agenda". Where that agenda just benefits the few/greedy and not the many. Just like were seeing now. We don't have a political dynasty. But, we still have a few (repub's) hanging onto a political agenda. And look at where that agenda has driven us.

    January 4, 2010 at 3:46 pm |
  23. MWS

    NO, NO, NO! Families like the Kennedys, Bushes and Clintons damage more than help the political environment of the united States. The beleif that these families are "entitiled" to place a successor in a political seat when it is vacant is more like the monarchy we overthrew in 1777 and should have no place in the U.S.. NEPOSTISM OF ANY KIND IS WRONG, INCLUDING IN THE MEDIA WHERE I ALSO SEE IT OCCURING, PRIMARILY AT THE FOX. NETWORK. ( Rviera y Doosey for example)

    January 4, 2010 at 3:52 pm |
  24. Lisa, San Jose CA

    Jack,
    Political dynasties are not good for the US.
    However, you can't solve this problem with a superficial fix like 'term limits', because the true dynasties don't happen at the level of the office-holder, but at the level of the lobbyists.
    If you force turnover of office-holders, all you do is provide fresh, naive new meat for the lobbyists, who may have 30 years of experience in manipulating legislators. If you don't, then you wind up with ossified favor-networks where the same 'good old boys' run everything behind the scenes.
    Until we can somehow enforce 'term limits' on lobbyists, nothing we do to 'fix' political dynasties is going to have any effect.

    January 4, 2010 at 3:54 pm |
  25. Hoosier Hillbilly Gnsbg,IN

    Dynasties we'll never be able to get away from, but when they're political it puts a new light on the picture. That's why there should be limits in terms of office, from the local dog catcher to the President and everything in between. Politics shoud not be a career, it should be people of stature in the country that are willing to volunteer their services for a period of time, not greedy selfrighteous underhanded
    (just for me) bureaucrats that make big salaries, have great retirements, and free healthcare all at the expense of the American people and then take what they don't get and throw the rest away!!!

    January 4, 2010 at 3:54 pm |
  26. Mark

    Yes, and hopefully Sarah Palin will start one in 2012, if our current President doesn't have us all too busy serving on jury duty for terrorist trials to even have time to go vote.

    Mark
    OKC

    January 4, 2010 at 3:54 pm |
  27. David of Alexandria VA

    No - we have no room for dynasties in a modern democracy. They are anachronisms. It is folly to believe that a Patrick Kennedy is somehow channeling any of Jack, Bobby or Ted, or would even want to in changing times is obvious. So a dynasty does what in real terms? Sell newspapers, I guess.

    January 4, 2010 at 3:54 pm |
  28. Coby Sedgwick

    You mean the billion dollar corporate families that have taken over the political agenda in certain arenas of public welfare. No there is nothing good to come of it. Their means outwiegh their ways, and they continue down the same stubborn roads that have done little to benefit their constituants as much as their own family agendas. It is corporate politics for the few not the many.

    January 4, 2010 at 3:55 pm |
  29. Mode (PDX)

    Political dynasties are proof of the failure of our "democracy," and symptomatic of a weak Republic–where oligarchs hold more power than elected officials.

    January 4, 2010 at 4:00 pm |
  30. Chad N.

    How can they be? Aren't political dynasties basically just an elected Monarchy? Can one argue that other participants in the dynasty do not have influence within the dynasty? Isn't that just extending a past presidency beyond term limits without actually maintaining the presidency?

    Dynasties, in our political system, are bad. Theres no getting around it.

    January 4, 2010 at 4:02 pm |
  31. Darren

    The Kennedy's were, the closest thing the United States has had to royalty. The Bush's, well it's not too hard to see why Jeb didn't bother throwing his hat into the ring, even being the smarter Bush.

    January 4, 2010 at 4:06 pm |
  32. Tom Bulger

    Yes, if they are imbued with the ideal of public service such as the Kennedys.

    No, if they are raised with a sense of entitlement and see politics as a cash cow for them, Halliburton, and their blue blood cronies.

    January 4, 2010 at 4:11 pm |
  33. Lene from IL

    The answer is a big fat NO! Politicians do not look at themselves as "public servants". anymore but rather consider themselves and their "close aquaitances" royalty and entitled. All of a sudden you have all the cards being set up in their favor. The Bush family is an excellent example. They have family members and friends tied to banks, Wall Street and the housing market and oil..etc. Isn't it so convenient when you have a family dynasty set in place so you can be given opportunities and favors to exploit the American people . Look where this country is today because of that. Then again, even without the family dynasties our politicians are still corrupt as ever and do the same things without being a dynasty. Lobby groups and big money still control the decisions our politicians make and nepotism is still strong and well ebven in the Obama Administration. We Americans need to go shake up Washington DC and teach these people that they are supposed to be doing what the people want and not controlling the people as puppets on strings. One thing I never understand is why Americans think that voting for the rich guy is the best way to go. Tell me, what makes the guy with the most money the most qualified? I think it's time for a revolution..lol

    January 4, 2010 at 4:16 pm |
  34. David Bebeau,Springfield Missouri

    Jack
    ""NO""
    Term limits are the only thing what will clean up Washington and put the good ole boys out of business.Our government and country is a mess BECAUSE of these insane crrupt dynasties.
    David

    January 4, 2010 at 4:17 pm |
  35. Larry from Georgetown, Tx

    No, we need to have a rotation system like real term limits at all levels of government. This will reduce the corruption that lobbyists create among those that have been in power way too long.

    January 4, 2010 at 4:24 pm |
  36. Dennis in Grand Rapids, MI

    No... they're kinda like the monarchies that the Framers intended to do away with.

    January 4, 2010 at 4:29 pm |
  37. Michael Alexandria, VA

    Whether they are good or not has nothing to do with whether they are going away or not, Jack. They aren't.

    January 4, 2010 at 4:36 pm |
  38. Aquoen

    Political dynasties are good for US politicians, not US citizens. So far these dynasties have helped hypocrits get elected and divide our nation further apart. Is it logical to expect a diverse nation of people to have political views of just democrat, republican, or independent parties? We are all Americans and individually created!

    January 4, 2010 at 4:39 pm |
  39. Bizz, Quarryville, Pennsylvania

    Political dynasties I think our bad for the country. They start believing that they have the power to do almost anything they want to. Sometimes that is good especially when it comes to passing a healthcare bill that our country so desperately needs and the other side refuses to cooperate in any fashion. But generally a dynasty whether it is in sports or just about anything, gets caught up in its own hype and power. Political dynasties usually end with a death or bad leadership. I think the Kennedy dynasty ended with senator kennedy's death because there is no one to fill his shoes. And I hope the Bush dynasty ended with George W because his shoes does not need to be filled.

    January 4, 2010 at 4:42 pm |
  40. Mr. D

    No, and this leads back to the other question of the day-our position and momentum on the world economic stage. Entrenched political dynasties do not serve the people in the right way and hinder the fast turn around required to be competitive in this century. We don't need roadblocks to progress in terms of legislative inaction resulting from past political alliances and paybacks. We have to be light and fast on our feet or we will be left in the dust.

    January 4, 2010 at 4:45 pm |
  41. Rick Medina,OH

    Jack,

    Entry to politics is money, drive, and name recognition. (It also helps if you have a few good ideas!) Continuation in politics is all the above plus a success or two. People with established names have a strong 'leg-up.' You see it in local races, too. But, it can back-fire. I can think of some names I would not want to be associated with now.

    Rick, Medina, OH

    January 4, 2010 at 4:56 pm |
  42. Steve

    Jack,
    I'd have to say NO. I base it on the fundamental reasoning that the founders developed the House of Representatives as a means to get untainted regular folks from the diverse American communities to have a voice in Congress
    Unfortunately it has turned into some sort of Country Club wooed by Lobbyist. No real representation is provided, just a bunch of political hacks trying to keep a job that has lots perks and they don't have to work hard at doing.
    Some Reps even have pet constituents that are provided for while other native born American citizens are ignored, such as in South Florida.

    Steve
    Mt. Dora, FL

    January 4, 2010 at 5:00 pm |
  43. Paul Round Rock, Texas

    In one word Jack. No! That is why most of our families left England, Scottland, and Ireland. They and I hope most of us wanted fair rule and not families of Kings.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:04 pm |
  44. Jerry Jacksonville, Fl.

    Hell no, they get to the point they think the offices belong to them, and they are the only ones that know what is good for us.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:05 pm |
  45. Diane Dagenais Turbide

    Hi Jack,

    Yes and No! Yes because it has the effect of keeping or promoting some of the corporate memory that exist in the broader sense of a nation's historical political facts, values and principles but the negative side is it can suffer from abuse and or affect the amount of and the quality of political innovation and evolution that ought to take place within the democratic mainstream in creating a new innovative collaborative partnership with insiders of the corporate memory from the existence of political dynasties! In other words...diversities breeds innovation even in politics!

    January 4, 2010 at 5:07 pm |
  46. Frank from Connellsville, PA

    Our forefathers came to this country in large part to escape from being governed by the "elite." Government service was never designed to be a full-time job. In fact the beauty of the system was that people who actually worked for a living or ran a business did this part-time and applied their business knowledge to problems.
    Now we have elected officials who have no business experience, no real world experience, trying to fix problems they don't understand.
    The only reason that some of these families continue to run is because their prior generations have done such a poor job in office the family name has been ruined to the point that no one in the private sector will hire them.
    These "dynasties" will ruin the country while exempting themselves from the rules they make for everyone else.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:09 pm |
  47. Bev -an American in Canada

    Absolutely not Jack, then it becomes about the person and an entitelment...."It is now my turn daddy... George had the baton last". I will vote for someone who has a good intellect, that can make insightful decisions not be swayed by his image, political pundits, wealthy donors and focusses on what the people want, not his colleagues or what will be good politically. He needs to take service to the people as a personal mission. Also not to forget..... someone with morals, principles and good family values. Appalachian hikes will be deal breaker, he will be gone in my book. Can't respect a man or wman who does not respect their own family. I don't care if his name is Rosenfeld, Ripper or Rose. Dynasties prevent the very able and capable average Joes to get a chance.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:09 pm |
  48. ken, nj

    NO. nepotism is everywhere and should outlawed. Give someone else a break and spread the wealth around.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:10 pm |
  49. Denis Duffy

    Public service is great in a family. Instead, we have public idiots.

    Denis
    Upper Saint Clair, Pa.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:11 pm |
  50. Sue

    NO!!! Last time I looked, we didn't have any provision for 'ruling' families in the Constitution.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:12 pm |
  51. Gail, Plano,Texas

    The answer to this question is easy, Jack. Yes and no. Yes, the Kennedy dynasty is a charismatic example. They always piqué your interest and we as a nation, love them for the sacrifices given to the country. However, in the case of the Bushes the answer is no. Both father and son were terrible presidents and their legacy bespeaks volumes. Jeb Bush forever stained by the 2000 election results. I do not consider the Clintons a dynasty. They are not related biologically. They are both successful politicians. The Adams were not great presidents. John Quincy Adams was a better member of Congress than a president. So it's a roll of the dice. Happy New Year, Jack. Good to see you.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:13 pm |
  52. Eugene, Myers Flat, CA

    Happy New Year Jack,

    Political dynasties are bad. They entrench politicians and promote personal agendas.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:13 pm |
  53. Meg from Troy, Ohio

    Jack–
    Dynasty sounds an awful lot like royal or noble–a little too European–read monarchy–for me. Not all characteristics are passed from generation to generation with their excellence intact. As an American, I'd rather judge my politicians on their achievements and beliefs, individually. Congress needs a house cleaning–some of those dynasty members need to give way to some new blood.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:15 pm |
  54. Paulette,Dallas,PA

    Where there is power there are people there to grab it. The public is already familiar with these dynasty names and will continue to support them. If the elected official did right by their constituents,then their relatives will benefit from their popularity. They all stick together like glue,that's why the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. It's tough to break into a climate such as this.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:16 pm |
  55. Larry, Ohio

    Jack,party politics and dynasties or the absolute worst for this country,both only cause bad feelings and partisanship.In Dayton,Ohio they have just elected a true independent as Mayor,He says this will help him and the community because he will open to listen to all sides of an issue.I think agree!

    January 4, 2010 at 5:16 pm |
  56. Linda in Arizona

    It depends on which dynasty it is, Jack. I wouldn't mind seeing another Kennedy, but another bush would make me want to urp my lunch.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:19 pm |
  57. Harold, in ANCHORAGE, AK

    They're OK, except for the Bush boys.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  58. The Broker.

    "It all depends on how indifferent they are! They learn by experience. But they have to be vetted just like any other choices. They do not have any more right's than others. Again! If just once they assume this, then they should lose points. Nobody is indispensable. I said it before and I say it again. 'Get involved.' """

    January 4, 2010 at 5:22 pm |
  59. Darrell Wright from Anderson, Indiana

    In my opinion, we need to vote every single politician out of office and start over. They have become greedy, lazy, and do not care what happens to the common citizen. Too many are only looking at lining their pockets with tax payer money and lobbiest payoffs. I say we vote them all out and continue to vote each crooked politician out of office until we get a decent new group in Washington.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  60. Myles

    Jack, don't get me wrong; I admire the Kennedys, the Roosevelts and the Clintons but they were notable exceptions to an oftentimes neglected rule regarding political dynasties. In general, they stink! Maintaining political offices for decades, they promote the deeply rooted stagnation which have overcome our Nation's capital. Modern nepitism, it has to be halted soon.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:26 pm |
  61. Lou from North Carolina

    No. Truman and Eisenhower were tops and they did not come from "the blood". Son and Daddy Bush didn't show us anything but chronic lying and covertness. The Kennedys came close to giving us some good men but they had real problems that were hard to get over. I'll take plain blood any day to blue blood. It appears that Blue blood is very "close hold" and interested their bank accounts.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:27 pm |
  62. Dennis North Carolina

    no, because it does not give the people government by the people but government by a special group which leads to corruption and failure of society.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:29 pm |
  63. Lance, Ridgecrest, Ca

    Jack, it is not the family dynasties that ruin government. It is the personal dynasties, like Ted Kennedy (40+yrs), W. Virginia's Senator (60 yrs?), etc that causes the problems. The answer is obvious, term limits, however, they, Congress, are in charge so that is a forlorn dream. They will continue to vote themselves all the money, power, and benefits they want without regard to the needs/wants of the people they are supposed to be serving until they destroy the country.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:30 pm |
  64. Kirk (Apple Valley, MN)

    Depends on which family is the dynasty. Kennedy: Good! Clinton: Good! Bush: BAD, BAD, BAD!!!! Come to think of it, ANY Republican family dynasty is BAD, BAD, BAD!!!

    January 4, 2010 at 5:30 pm |
  65. Brian Delray Beach, FL

    What we need is not political dynasties but term limits of two for senators and three for representatives. Political dynasties perpetuate whatever has preceded. We have enough cronyism in our current mess. Our Congress has become a lobbyist convention as it is.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:31 pm |
  66. Kenneth Kohlmann

    Many professions are open to this sort of phenomenon. My family is a 4-generation fire fighting family. Police departments, physicians, clergy, on and on, show same patterns. Children emulate their parents. I see no problems with those professions and patterns. I do however feel that there could be a problem. When daddy's a tax cheat, a womanizer, a manipulator, or likes to have his palm greased (ala the Senator from NE) I hope the kids don't follow suit. But, human nature says they will.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:32 pm |
  67. Richard, Kankakee, IL.

    One word No! They smell and quack just like the fake royalty of England, look at them they have a queen who has no power, and the people and their money is being used to subsidizes those bums. We do not need, do not want right now, and will never need some fake figure head to act as if they are better then every one else on the country, because they have a title before their real name. Why don't they just go start a business or get a real job, and join the real world!!

    January 4, 2010 at 5:32 pm |
  68. Rob in NC

    I do not believe they are. The old saying absolute power corrupts absolutely comes to mind. Too many of these same folks stay in power forever and they lose sight of the people they are supposed to be helping. I think they are more concerned about keeping their power than helping those in need. Rob in NC

    January 4, 2010 at 5:33 pm |
  69. Ken In Pinon Hills, CA

    It appears not, I'm refer to those two political dynasties where only they themselves matter, and country is of little matter, the Democratic, and Republican parties.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:34 pm |
  70. Kate

    Other than the Kennedys, . . .no.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:34 pm |
  71. Jerry in California

    Well when you refer to dynasties thats basically the powerful and very rich in the States if they use there power for good we get a Kennedy's if they use there power for evil we get the Bush's.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:35 pm |
  72. pat in michigan

    it just means more of the same backroom politics and gridlock which has parylized govt. for decades.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:35 pm |
  73. Lil Me

    I don't think political dynasties are either good or bad. Sure, families can sometimes abuse their power, but I like to think that whether it's the Kennedy family or the Bush family, the kids are raised with a strong sense of service to their country. As long as the kids go into politics with a desire to serve their constituents – not for the power or to advance a particular agenda – they should be treated like any other candidate. Not all kids share the same political beliefs as their parents.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:39 pm |
  74. Dave, Brooklyn, NY

    Of course the best form of government is a benign dictatorship. So if the dynasty is a good one such as the Kennedys, that’s a good thing. Not so good if it is the Bush dynasty. Get my drift?

    January 4, 2010 at 5:44 pm |
  75. Tricia

    No, it leads to narrowing of ideas and beliefs. Also adds to the idea that that person is entitled to the position instead of being a public "servant".

    January 4, 2010 at 5:47 pm |
  76. Tricia

    No, it leads to narrowing of ideas and beliefs. Also adds to the idea that that person is entitled to the position instead of being a public "servant".

    Juneau Alaska

    January 4, 2010 at 5:48 pm |
  77. Frank Barker. Tn.

    It's my contention that no they are not good in the over all picture. They tend to go the same way as their Fathers and Mothers did while in office. The problem with our government today is the same as it was in my fathers time. What was good enough for my grandfather was good enough for my father and therefor should be good enough for me and my son. We are never going to get anything good for the people passed because the two parties are too busy worrying about getting re-elected. Both parties have no agenda that is clear and definate. They are only interested in getting re-elected the next term not in whats good for America.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:49 pm |
  78. Thom Richer

    None that has proven to be so thus far. Dynasties, political or familial, have no place in a TRUE Democracy. That being said, dynasties cannot serve a "good" purpose in this supposed U.S. Democracy.

    Thom Richer
    Negaunee, MI

    January 4, 2010 at 5:50 pm |
  79. Ron Martin

    I think obviously, dynasties would not be as much an issue if we Term Limits !!!!!!!!!!!!!! We also need campaign funding limits as well. Please continue unbiased media coverage of lobby interest as well.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:54 pm |
  80. John from Newark, Ohio

    Jack, it has often been observed that, on consideration of his own attributes and talents, George W. Bush would have been a nobobdy. Without his connection to his father, he certainly would never have been president. Indeed he wouldn't have been able to dodge service in Vietnam by getting into the Air National Guard. Clearly, the United States of America would have avoided a disaster if not for the impact of the Bush dynasty. I'd like to think that quality people in other families would be able to make significant contributions without the helping hand of nepotism. So, to whatever extent we can factor out dynastic influences in our politics (and other enterprises) we should do so.

    January 4, 2010 at 5:57 pm |
  81. Angie

    For the voters, It all depends on which side of the issue the political family dynasty is on.

    For the Rich and Wealthy, It all depends on how much the political family dynasty is willing to help the Rich and Wealthy get richer and wealthier on.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:00 pm |
  82. frank

    Only Democratic ones. Look at the Kennedy dynasty, 3 sons that served in public service. Find any Republican one that qualifies. The kids either are sickly and die off or would rather take care of the rich at the expense of the rest of us. And look how the family distributes it wealth. Way different than any GOP riche does.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:03 pm |
  83. Peter, Long Beach, CA

    The Europeans have a different name for 'political dynasties' :- Royalty

    January 4, 2010 at 6:03 pm |
  84. Tom in New Hope, MN

    NO! What we need are term limits so the politicians don't get so entrenched that they are only beholding to the special interest groups. Politicians need to start working for the people. Zealots need to go so the moderates can actually solve some of our nations critical problems. Political gridlock is getting us nowhere while our country continues to rot. Political dynasties are nothing more than lazy voters because they recognize a name on the ballot.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:07 pm |
  85. Karl from SF, CA

    Apparently most of them were good since they have gotten us this far. Now as for the Bush dynasty, that is a good question. Perhaps if they had run Jebb in 2000 we might not be where we are today and I doubt even “thrift scandal” Neal would have done as bad as “W” did.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:11 pm |
  86. Kevin McKenzie

    Political dynasties in and of themselves aren't a problem. If someone's family is into politics then it's not surprising that they themselves will be political. The problem is politicians with no principles, and politicians who see their elected office as their personal throne. We need principled statesmen, such as Ron and Rand Paul, in Washington, D.C. whose goal is to restrain the government to its limited constitutional bounds. We don't need any more politicians who feel they're entitled to use the power of government for their own benefit.

    Canton, Ohio

    January 4, 2010 at 6:11 pm |
  87. Chad from Los Angeles

    Common sense tells us that just because one person is a good public servant, does not mean their offspring will be. I mean, look at Bush Sr. versus Jr. Sr. was an average President, but "W" was a complete disaster..

    January 4, 2010 at 6:13 pm |
  88. Mari Fernandez, Utah

    Happy 2010 everyone!

    No, Jack, no dynasty political or otherwise is good for any country. Problem is that most of the folks that can run for office are the wealthy 1% of Americans.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:15 pm |
  89. Don Howard

    They are only good for America Jack, if your last name is Blogoyovich. Hopefully the former Gov's kids will grow up real fast.

    Don Howard
    Newtown, PA

    January 4, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  90. Tom in Iowa

    Dynasties are fine as long as the name involved is not Bush or Palin.

    Tom in Iowa

    January 4, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  91. Scott

    Hell no

    Are we all a bunch of baboons? why dont we try something new?
    If we keep this up nothing will change.

    Scott
    Aberdeen, MD

    January 4, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  92. Annie, Atlanta

    The Kennedys were. Ted could have lived the life of a millionaire playboy, yet gave much of it to public service instead. The Bushes, not so much. It was all about improving their bottom line. It would be interesting to see just how much.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:16 pm |
  93. omar

    it is true that in a democratic nation such as ours political dynasties should not exist but in certain cases such as the Kennedys, some families have the power to truely change our country and the world for the better

    January 4, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  94. Manny Whitlock

    You know my answer.

    GOD BLESS,

    Manny

    January 4, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  95. Paul

    No, they are the antithesis of the ideals of America. America was built on not having a monarchy. Having family political dynasties only breeds incompetence, stagnation, decline, and corruption.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:17 pm |
  96. andrew in aberdeen, nc

    Jack,

    The question should not be whether a dynasty is good or bad, that is too evident: Dy NASTY. Nuf said.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  97. Clinton Loyalist

    The question is not as simple as you make it out to be Jack. It depends on WHICH dynasty, not the concept of dynasty itself. I love all the Clintons and Kennedys, they have done great things for this country. The Bush dynasty? well lets just say i'm glad its over.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  98. Peter M

    No, theyu are not. That is why America had a revolution and threw out the colonists. America is supposed to be a democracy and a meritocracy. This means that, people who are qualified-people with merit– are recognized and voted into public office to serve their fellow citizens.

    Acquiring high public office by virtu of one's birh is aristocracy...that is why America threw out the English...

    America should be moving forward, not backwards.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:18 pm |
  99. dcnaser

    Not good at all as you mentioned. It will almost be like kings, queens, sheikhs and princes of the Gulf countries. One family for life. Give me a break!

    January 4, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  100. Paul Morandell

    Yes and No, Everybody loves to hear about a great American legacy, but at the same time there is almost no difference now a days between a family dynasty and a royal family. This if i recall was one of the reasons why we became an independent nation from Britain electing only presidents

    January 4, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  101. Rick Seno

    Political dynasties can be a great thing because we get candidates who do not need on the job training. Chances are they have been exposed to the in and outs of government and have the backing of their families to help them along the way. I'll take a Kennedy or Clinton any day over a Palin or Obama.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:19 pm |
  102. Tyrone Hall

    It cannot be. Leadership is not a birthright...it is earned through hard work and grit. Dynasties privilege connections over abilities it projects a sense of paternalism that is reprehensible. America does not need that folly, it has enough!

    January 4, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  103. nobody, maryland

    Neither, nor, Jack.

    On the one hand, children from a political family could be
    that much better at understanding the issues
    of democracy, law, constitution, representation, politics, etc
    and likewise that much better at privilege, corruption, etc.
    So, a toss-up.

    Ultimately, it really boils down to whether the _voters_ are
    up to _their_ job, doesn't it?

    January 4, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  104. Randy T

    Yes! With the millionaire and billionaire bushes, kennedys, and rockefellers running the country don't you feel just peachy knowing they're doing their best to make sure every american is prospering as well as their families are?

    January 4, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  105. Rick Seno

    Political dynasties can be a great thing because we get candidates who do not need on the job training. Chances are they have been exposed to the in and outs of government and have the backing of their families to help them along the way. I'll take a Kennedy or Clinton any day over a Palin or Obama.

    Rick Seno
    Chicago, Il

    January 4, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  106. K-Dawg Greeley, CO

    No way! I am tired of members of the same family time after time again get into the political arena. In a country of over 300 million people, we need more variety!

    January 4, 2010 at 6:20 pm |
  107. Fred

    I don't see it as being a dynasty, I see it as private citizens wanting to represent the best interest of their communities. Anyone has the right to run for public office. It is the people who decide.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  108. samiaminiowa

    Why not – at least they know the ropes!

    January 4, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  109. Stephen

    Didn't we once remove the British aristocratic system because of not representing the will of the people.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  110. Gary Brown

    They seem all too common in third world countries and if we are to believe Pat Buchanan's comments that appeared earlier on the program, then we are fast heading there ourselves. Having such dynasties might be another sign of these troubling times, but they are a BAD idea.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  111. Oscar

    "...for the people, by the people" or "for the dynasty, by the dynasty"?

    January 4, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  112. Holly Fernandez

    Absolutely not! That's why we had the Enlightenment supposedly to reject aristocratic rule and power in the European model. No where in our requirements for our public offices, up to and including Commander in Chief, does it describe geneologic heritage or monetary inheritance as a prerequisite, thus "All men are created equal" regardless of social status. We all ideally have equal potential and opportunity.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  113. angel Soto

    Rand Paul the Son of Ron Paul is the type of candidate that this government can use, a Constitutionalist, smaller government, no bailouts, no military occupations in other countries. This is what the founding fathers wanted.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:21 pm |
  114. josh givens

    jack, no way, no how are political dynasties good for our country ... yet they are as old the country itself. when one group or family is graced with so much power, ineptitude and laurel-resting will follow at some point ... we have only the 41st and 43rd administrations as two examples. anyone over 35 can attest to that, if speaking honestly. dynasties just don't seem to work in the best interests of the people. here in kentucky, we are facing a dynasty in dr. rand paul's bid for u.s. senate. while dr. paul is offering somewhat of a fresh voice, thus far, one has to wonder when his voice becomes that of his father. the kennedys have always toed the family ideal of leadership and power, the clintons are putting in the same, though one has to wonder just how much say our secretary of state has in the current administration. our system of government was intended to be 'of the people and by the people' ... seems to me the only people the system is serving are those coming back for second-, third- and fourth-helpings.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  115. Laura Nason

    Niles, MI
    Absolutely NOT, Jack. We gave up FIEFDOM 230 + years ago.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  116. Bill from Clinton, Maryland

    Jack,
    No, political dynasties are not good in any way. Just look at sports and its dynasties. Unfortunately, voters are like sheep. There are thoses who will vote for Bush's as they would be for Clinton's and Kennedy's. Here's what you get with the word Dynasty when dropping the DY - - NASTY.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  117. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    Jack, dynasties create a sense of entitlement. Remember the recent mess when Carolyn Kennedy was 'campaigning' to be appointed to fill Hillary's Senate seat? There was an expectation that even with no qualifications , the name was qualification enough. It seems that rarely does the talent get transferred in the genetic crap shoot.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  118. Phil

    Jack, NO! Plain and simple. As I recall from history books isn't that why we came to this country, to break free from a dynasty? It is amazing of how we forget our history...

    January 4, 2010 at 6:22 pm |
  119. GiGi from Mpls.

    Having a famous name is not going to insure a seat in the Senate or Congress.
    Hubert Humphrey's son and Grandson have both tried and have not
    been successful.
    I see nothing wrong with a Candidate with a famous name
    running for an Office, if they are qualified.
    Unfortunately in the Bush family the one with the least credibility ran and run, leaving Jeb out in the street with no chance in the future.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  120. Lynn, Columbia, Mo.

    It depends on where they stand on the issues and not their names. We should be able to vote for anyone we want, even if it turns out to be another Bush debacle. Let the people and the electoral college decide. We do need more of a variety though. Five or six parties should do it. The two main parties are the problem, not who they're related to.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:23 pm |
  121. Kevin

    Jack you can look at political dynasties being good and bad in two ways. First who are they replacing. People need to go and do the reserch on that family before they elect them in office. They need to see if the person ever violated ethics in the senate or congress or as president and they need to see what accomplishments that person had. Then when they go to elect a person from one of these dynasties they need to see if they share the same policies as their family did. For example, Beau Biden is he going to be like his dad a stickler on Foreign Policy and a well respected diplomat. All the rest of the Dynasty kids that are running people need to do the reserch on ther dynasties before electing them.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  122. cora

    Jack, Happy New Year..And Hell NO,it is NOT a good idea, Well, with the Federal Reserve..the U.S. is not a Democracy,not Socialist! We are an Imperialistic Nation/Society.. The Families that 'run' the Federal Reserve are our royalty...That is enough to make me sick...more of the Buddy System will only continue the onslaught that is being perpetrated on the WORLD population... right this moment, and since Christmas 1913!!!

    January 4, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  123. Dennis, Columbus, Ohio

    Come on now Jack, you know it’s good for our country.

    The siblings don’t have to waist time getting to know all those important contacts.
    They can go straight to work pleasing the rich power brokers.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  124. Ken in NC

    Dynasties used to be good for this country because more peoplel then were honest. That was up to the 60's. Now people (politicians)only concern themselves with the money source.

    Citizens all want more services but no one wants to pay for them.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:24 pm |
  125. Ralph Spyer chicago Il

    F.D. R. was Churchill first cousin giving help to England and the U.S. was not at war with Germany yet. Dynasties are not only in Government look at any family with money, the grandfather made the money the son try to hold on to the business and his son is the play boy . Look at john Mc Cane for one , how did ever stay in the Navy? Then their the Bushes? The grandfather help Germany and we were at war, but he made money.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  126. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Absolutely not, we have too many so called politicians that we can't de-throne now because of no term limits.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:25 pm |
  127. Arlene, Illinois

    That question is the exact reason we need term limits.
    It might not help but at lease we'll see were they come from.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  128. Al

    We have become a nation of political inbreeding. Look where it's gotten us! We need to stop it!

    January 4, 2010 at 6:26 pm |
  129. MacFab

    Jack I am afraid you are dead wrong in the answer you gave. Why I am not saying that it is either good or bad idea idea, this issue has been settled when we chose democracy. It is up to the people to decide in referendum whether to keep electing these folks from the so called dynasties. MacFab TX

    January 4, 2010 at 6:28 pm |
  130. Robert Mears

    Every time I hear the word "Jeb" I have a panic attack.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  131. dave ; canada

    Of course not . If there were term limits attached to these seats , few of these leaches would apply . Gaining access to the perks , fame and financial opportunities of these ' civil service ' positions is akin to winning a lottery . Purging the system of career free- loaders should be encouraged.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  132. Ran Sea. Wa.

    Did you mean "Royal Family"? It seems that a "Dynasty" could potentially be good. It would have to incorporate the intereset of the majority of people in this country and stand by those values throughout the life of the dynasty. (haha)The main concern for me with a dynasty, is our government could potentially lead us from a" box" .This box ,at that point, could potentially lead to the demise of our " think tank". It would be a blessing if our government could somehow think outside the "box".(not likely) A "dynasty" is like a" monopoly".A generation would have to abide by that leadership, whether they are satisfied or not. Monopolies, last time I checked were illegal. Term limits, not just for the president would certainly be a good start to the end of these dynasties. Change is wat this country needs to get back on its feet. Thinking outside the box and bringing back the think tank are a good start.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  133. Joan Cruz

    Political dynasties are a really bad idea. My cure for that is easy....never vote for anyone with the surname of a politician who is or was ever in office. There are plenty of smart and honest people out here who never served in office, but could do a better job than what we haved there now!

    January 4, 2010 at 6:29 pm |
  134. Gary LeDrew

    "Everyone knows that on a large scale democracy is pernicious nonsense
    a country or even a county cannot be run by a self-seeking parcel of tub-thumping
    politicians working on popular emotion, rousing the mob."

    This is a quote from John Aubrey in Patrick O'Brians novel
    The Yellow Admiral. Kinda says it all

    January 4, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  135. LC

    Another source you should have checked: The New Yorker, Oct. 27, 2007. Dynastic Voyage by Hertzberg.

    And you have a really, really, really, really short memory: Ever heard of the Bush Family? The Kennedys?

    As for the news business? Seems to me that Mike Wallace has a son in the business and, I think, Tim Russert's son, with little or no experience, is now reporting from the White House.

    Nepotism is alive and well throughout the country.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:31 pm |
  136. Eric from New Jersey

    One of the biggest problems with are government is corruption! I am not including every single person in politics but I'm including the majority. Politicians are more worried about stuffing there pockets insead of the people who actually keep this country going and pay THEIR salaries. One and done thats it, you payed ur sevice to your country heres a plaque and a pin welcome back to the real world Mcdonalds might be hiring.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  137. Jack - Lancaster, Ohio

    Jack:

    I think we can observe from the "family dynasties" we have endured here is that they are such close dynasties that they are now suffering from hemophylia, with the insult that the country is bleeding out.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:33 pm |
  138. Gary H. Boyd

    Absolutely - it's kinda like a monarchy. Only thing different are the titles. And it's easier to keep track of the pecking order. The parents call the shots and the kids handle the details. I love monarchies.

    Gary H. Boyd in Scottsdale, Arizona

    January 4, 2010 at 6:34 pm |
  139. Jim

    Jack,

    They can be good if they produce consistently fine leaders, like the Kennedys. But if a dynasty family accumulates enough wealth and power to literally steal a presidential election and force a George W. Bush down our throats, that's very bad. Of course, if the electorate did its homework and was less influenced by obvious lies and propaganda, the latter wouldn't really be a problem.

    Jim
    Reno, Nevada

    January 4, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  140. Tom in Tampa Fl.

    Not if the surname is Bush or Cheney.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:38 pm |
  141. Luci - Illinois

    Some Dynasty's are better than others.
    You have the Kennedy's pictured and they have helped more needy than any others.
    Take the Bush's, they only helped the wealthy and themselves.
    I would like to see Barack in for 8 years, then Michelle for 8 years, then the daughters for 8 years each.
    Very good idea.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:39 pm |
  142. Brett (Tucson)

    We need look no further than our neighbor to the South to see that political dynasties are a bad idea. With over 70 years of PRI domination, corruption was able to sink deep in to the political fabric of Mexico. Now that the PRI has lost power, and the unwritten political agreements gone with them, the country is emersed in internal power struggles – many of them violent. Politicians and corruptions go hand-in-hand here in the USA as much as in Mexico or anywhere else in the world. We the people need to actively avoid political dynasties in order to remain the most productive and viable country in the world.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:41 pm |
  143. Tom Hammond

    No-but we will continue to have them because the electorate is either to stupid to differentiate the good from the bad(Kennedys-Ted from Jack and Bob;Clintons-Hillary from Bill; Bush two from Bush one and Jeb etc) or because of the money/name recognition advantage we give to those running for office, which clearly favors someone like Hillary Clinton moving to NY from AK and becoming Senator, or someone running to fill their dead husband's seat etc. If you look at the local level it is even a bigger problem-NY City council etc.In the end, although term limits work to some extent, there is no easy way to prevent the idiot son or daughter of someone in politics from thinking they are entitled to public office and capitalizing on the family name. We really just have to rely on our democracy and our abillity to look deeper than the name. And sometimes we might just be pleasantly surprised-where the son or daughter actually grows into the office and arguably becomes better than the father-Governor Patterson comes to mind-written off as the idiot son of Basil-keep your eye on him in defeating another dynasty-or budding dynasty-the Cuomos.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:41 pm |
  144. john, saskatchewan

    Here we go again with the politician questions, as though they were in charge. Political dynasties are like Court Jester dynasties in the Elizabethan period. They are a ways down the power line.

    When the King demanded even greater "tribute", from the great unwashed slaves, for his endless wars of conquest, he would deflect objections with a few drawings and quarterings, but then leave 'em laughing by throwing the court jester out there.

    It was the "fool's" job to be wildly entertaining and make the groundlings forget their endless persecution and keep the nobles preoccupied. The profession of Court Jestering was passed on from Jester to Jester Jr. Like political doublespeak, it takes generations to perfect. As Shakespeare said, "Better a witty fool, than a foolish wit."

    January 4, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  145. Jim

    If the people vote them in, then yes, but then again the people need to stop whining about their politicians. We have the power to fix government, yet we give up that right up over false promises over and over again.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:42 pm |
  146. Nestor, Austin, TX

    I can't wait for the next one...the Obama dynasty. Mmm, mmm, mmm.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:45 pm |
  147. Tony Lee

    No.

    In order to be credible, any candidate whose family has had a hand in politics must refuse funding and support from contacts gotten through his family connections.

    He must run on what HE has done.The American political system already favors the elite; it is an act of cowardice to use your family to help you in anyway other than emotional and spiritual support. That's what we use them for. If you want to represent and lead us, show that you can be like us.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:47 pm |
  148. charley

    Robin Carnahan can't be in this group period. Please stay out of Missouri politics. Remember Harry Trurman? Do you think we would have been looking for 9 years for Bin Laden during his administration. Charley Rolla Mo.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:48 pm |
  149. Roy

    No,No,No, we got enough lifers in washington now. Once they get there they think they can retire but this year us votes are gonna vote the BUMS OUT OF OFFICE and put joe the plumber in there seat if we have to and maybe the next term will get the job done.

    Roy

    WV

    January 4, 2010 at 6:52 pm |
  150. roger

    No, political dynasty's are bad for the US. In fact, politicians in general are horrible for the US!

    January 4, 2010 at 6:53 pm |
  151. Miriamfl

    Jack, it depends on the individual that is running. I feel Bobby Kennedy would have done a great job if he had been given the opportunity, and even though Bush will go down as the worst president of our generation I think Jeb would have been OK, just OK though.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:53 pm |
  152. Susan - CA

    Not a good idea for any country as it only means better cover-up by family members

    Susan – CA

    January 4, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  153. southerncousin

    Only if you want to preserve old ideas and defend past mistakes. The Kennedys prove that.

    January 4, 2010 at 6:54 pm |
  154. Rick McDaniel

    In a word.....NO!

    January 4, 2010 at 6:55 pm |