Ackerman compares Kennedy to Palin, and Rembrandt’s brother


Comparing Democratic royalty to Sarah Palin? That harsh analogy on Sunday didn’t come from a Republican, but from a well-known Jewish Democrat in the House of Representatives.

"They basically Sarah Palin-ized her," said Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-N.Y.) on "Face the Nation" yesterday, discussing Kennedy’s written answers to policy questions from the media, reports the Associated Press.

(Kennedy — or, actually, a spokesperson, since the questions were not answered in the first person but in the third — said she favored an "undivided Jerusalem" as the capital of Israel and said, as Palin did during the presidential campaign, that "Israel’s security decisions should be left to Israel.")

Ackerman said Kennedy’s name and family wouldn’t, and shouldn’t, be enough to get her appointed to the U.S. Senate seat Hillary Clinton will vacate once she is sworn in as secretary of state.

“Everyone knows who she is, but I’m not sure what she is,” Ackerman said. “Eventually she has to get in the ring and face the public.” …

“DNA in this business can take you just so far,” said the congressman, before cracking a joke. “Rembrandt was a great artist. His brother Murray, on the other hand, Murray Rembrandt, wouldn’t paint a house.”

Ackerman has been making all kinds of Kennedy-related analogies in the last few days. In a radio interview last week, he said, “I don’t know what Caroline Kennedy’s qualifications are except that she has name recognition. But so does J. Lo. I wouldn’t make J. Lo the senator unless she proved she had great qualifications.” He later said he meant no offense to either Kennedy or J. Lo.

Meanwhile, rumors out of Albany have another Jewish Democrat, Rep. Steve Israel (D-N.Y.) as a possible appointment to the Senate seat. Israel is on a trip to Iraq this week with New York Gov. David Paterson (D), who will make the appointment, and the New York Post quotes a "source close to Paterson" who who says that on their mission to the region, the governor "will be talking to Steve about his interest in the Senate, and you could say this gives Steve Israel a leg up on Caroline."

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