Caroline Kennedy's embarrassing "ums" and "you knows" in the Times Saturday followed questions about why she wants to be senator. Funny, Ted Kennedy was doomed by the same question!

It was the damning highlight of Kennedy's campaign for the 1980 presidential nomination of the Democratic Party, a simple question from CBS' Roger Mudd: "Why do you want to be president?"

Kennedy's faltering answer showed he clearly hadn't really thought about it. His answer involved America's awesome "natural resources," as though he'd been asked why he chose to bless this country with his campaign. (Click to watch the video up top.)

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The Associated Press has a sense of deja vu:

In interviews over the weekend, [Carolin Kennedy] offered explanations for running that included the 9/11 attacks on Manhattan, where she has lived since the 1960s, Barack Obama's encouragement, and the commitment to public service by her father, President John F. Kennedy, and others in her family.

For some, that was reminiscent of a 1979 interview that helped undo her uncle's presidential campaign... Political science professor Robert McClure of Syracuse University's Maxwell School saw the connection...

"It reminds me over and over again of that [Ted Kennedy] episode," he said.

Key difference: At the time of the infamous interview, Ted Kennedy had served in the U.S. Senate for 17 years. Caroline Kennedy has no such credentials, even at the local level, or any at all, at least not pertaining to the job she is seeking. (Of course, when he entered the senate, Ted Kennedy had barely turned 30 and was very wet behind the ears. Now he's paying it forward!)