Not surprisingly after two months of buildup and a tumultuous road to get to its finish line, the conclusion of selecting a replacement for Senator Hillary Clinton did not go out with a whimper. Instead, many of the storylines that had manifested themselves culminated this week with Governor Paterson's ultimate selection of Congresswoman Kirsten Gillibrand.
Paterson looks like the number one goat coming out of all this. Over the weekend, criticism towards the governor's role in the process were lobbed at him from every angle. People close to the Kennedys claim that the governor pressured Caroline into the "personal reason" excuse and then allowed leaks to get out where he called her "nasty" and showing "disrespect." One source tells the Post that the family is "furious" and that Paterson "is going to pay."
Even prominent Democrats were at the forefront of putting down Paterson's behavior drawing out and teasing about his selection process throughout. As a result of it, some Dems see his governorship as "reeling and troublingly disorganized." One consultant said, “He’s managed to anger, in one fell swoop, the Kennedys, the Cuomos and the Clintons.” The Times even questions whether the governor's poor showing is related to the recent resignation of his top adviser, Charles O'Byrne.
So who came out a winner as a result of Hillary Clinton's leaving the state to become Secretary of State? Obviously, Gillibrand did, as she quickly makes her presence felt around the state—today meeting with Paterson, Clinton and her new colleague Senator Schumer. But all of the positive attention showered on Andrew Cuomo has increased his reputation as a major player in state politics and beyond, especially as he is seen as taking the high road with his hands-off approach throughout the process, a stark contrast from Paterson's public wavering.
Last (and maybe least), dare we say that SNL's Fred Armisen may have scored a minor victory. Armisen had come under quite a bit of fire for his portrayal of the "accidental governor" last month. After a weekend that has seen more and more quotes questioning things like "David's reputation among those who know him for liking to party more than he likes to work," does Armisen's slapstick of a bumbling Paterson possibly come across as a case of truth in comedy?