Does Joe Kennedy's Senate Refusal Mean the End of Political Dynasty?

There may be no new Kennedy Idol after all! Joseph Kennedy II, RFK's son, said he won't run for his late Uncle Ted's Senate seat, which means Massachusetts will not have a Kennedy lawmaker for the first time since 1946.

While surely the implications of this news are big in the Kennedy context — could it be the family is relinquishing its hand on America's political system? — it also opens the door for a new generation of political dynasties. But, sadly, the prospects are dim.

The most obvious choice would be the Bush's, a family that has produced two presidents and Jeb. Since Barbara's basically a persona non-grata and Jenna's working for Today, the family's brightest star could be George Prescott Bush, President Dubya's attorney nephew who's also a real estate honcho. That combination, plus his good looks, could make him a good candidate to maintain the family's standing as a preeminent political family.

With Bill being a former President and Hillary as Secretary of State, some are hoping Chelsea Clinton will keep the family's lawmaking legacy alive. She seems to have little interest in politics and therefore won't help build a nascent dynasty. Sad.

We're thinking that the Obama girls may be the nation's best bet for political nepotism. Yeah, the girls are still in school, but the First Family has already been compared to the Kennedy clan and their revered "Camelot." If these girls choose — or if the family pushes, as should be done in all political dynasties — Sasha and Malia Obama could carry the torch for a new American royal family.

Perhaps there's another family out there, toiling away to break into the Washington scene. We sure hope so. This country could use more nepotistic clans who ingrain themselves into our democratic system. It seems antithetical to the American dream, yes, but this nation's democratic roots are also long-addicted to the ups-and-downs of political family drama. And we all know addictions must be fed.