How Kennedy Kept Riches Hidden

Future magic unicorn senator Caroline Kennedy was the only New York City employee who got to avoid disclosing her assets when she worked for the schools. That's right: Kennedy was privileged.

Granted, that surprises basically no one, since Kennedy's last name and family privilege is the only reason she's looking like a shoo-in for a job she's utterly unqualified to hold.

But it is interesting how much of a free pass the prospective New York senator got in her work for the city Department of Education from 2002 to 2004, judging from today's Times story.

Kennedy was apparently the only person in the entire city government who got to aboid filing a 32-page personal financial disclosure form. Even Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who like Kennedy earned only $1 per year in salary, had to disclose his assets. Kennedy's two top deputies had to disclose. Two other top officials with nominal salaries had to disclose. Kennedy got pass.

How? The city keeps changing its answer:

City officials have most often pointed to Ms. Kennedy’s decision to accept $1-a-year in salary. More recently, Joel I. Klein, chancellor of New York’s schools, explained that she was ultimately exempt from the requirement because the department did not deem her to be a “policymaker.”

The Times has been hammering Kennedy on this issue. It already mentioned her pass from the city in a story two weeks ago, in which Kennedy refused to make detailed financial disclosures to the Times itself.

The only trouble? No one is alleging that Kennedy has any ill-gotten riches. It's mildly upsetting that she got a pass on some public disclosure laws, but fault for that lies with the city. The problem is that Kennedy couldn't get financially crafty if she wanted to. The U.S. Senate will eat this woman alive.