[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/08/27/kennedy.camelot/art.1948.jfk.jpg caption=" Ted Kennedy, far right, with brothers Bobby, center, and Jack in 1948."]FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
(CNN) - Despite the fact that the second generation of Kennedys has so far failed to distinguish themselves to the degree that Jack, Robert and Ted did – a bunch of them have still managed to find their way into elected office.
In addition to finding a replacement for Ted Kennedy in the Senate, it's likely to become a bit of a parlor game trying to figure out who will eventually emerge as the political leader of the remainder of the Kennedy family.
Some of the possibilities include the late senator's sons Edward Kennedy Jr. and Congressman Patrick Kennedy of Rhode Island, who have been named as possible replacements for his seat, along with his nephew, former Congressman Joseph P. Kennedy the second.
The Daily Beast reports that when Caroline Kennedy failed to launch a bid for Hillary Clinton's old Senate seat, many thought that meant the end of the Kennedy dynasty, but they point out there are several younger Kennedys who might just be waiting to step in including:
–Robert F. Kennedy Jr., a lawyer and environmentalist.
–Kerry Kennedy, who has led human-rights delegations to dozens of countries.
–Christopher Kennedy, who's avoided politics up until now, but was seen as a possible replacement for Barack Obama's Senate seat.
-and Maria Shriver, wife to California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who has been a very involved First Lady and is considered one of her husband's closest advisers.
Here’s my question to you: Will the end of Camelot mean the end of the Kennedys' influence in America?
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Brian from Boise, Idaho writes:
Jack, Certainly not. It means the opposite: there is now a power void at the top of the Kennedy chain that for decades was occupied by Ted Kennedy. The Kennedys are famous, but only one at a time: JFK, then RFK, then EMK. Had Ted Kennedy died in a way as unfortunate as his brothers, we’d be talking about a different Kennedy today. They are great not because their name defined them, but because they defined their name.
I think that with Ted Kennedy's death the Kennedy family's political influence will not be nearly as strong. But given their history of public service, I believe they will continue to serve their country and inspire people all over the world, just as Senator Kennedy would want.
As long as the Kennedy progeny remember where they came from and the call to service that was issued to their clan a long time ago, Camelot will never end.
The legacy of the Kennedys, especially in politics, lies squarely on the shoulders of the three brothers. Many of the younger generation do not have the gravitas that their fathers and uncles had. The probable successor was John Jr., but of course he too has been a tragic victim of the Kennedy curse. The Kennedys influence and legacy will most likely start to wane within the next generation. In two generations, they will most likely be part of the notable families of history, but their power will be gone.
C.R. from Dominica writes:
No, Jack. I suspect in the not too distant future one of the Kennedy clan will step up and take his/her place in history. There are just too many of them for something not to happen.
When we think of gaining our independence, we credit Washington and Jefferson. When we think of the end of slavery, we credit Lincoln. The Kennedy name will go down in history as the family who brought civil rights to America. Though the death of an era is always sad, how fitting that it coincides with our first black president in office.