I just got off the phone with Massachusetts state Sen. Richard Tisei, the leader of the minority Republicans in the state Senate, and he confirmed to me that the GOP is not ruling out a court challenge against any possible new law to quickly fill Ted Kennedy's Senate seat through an interim appointment.Which does in fact make the Dems look like a bunch of hypocrites, and Tisei certainly has a point. But the fact of the matter is if Democrats in the Bay State do have the votes to change state law, they're going to do it. Republicans would do the exact same thing if the roles were reversed and they know it.
Tisei said that when Democrats changed the law in 2004 to provide for special elections instead of gubernatorial appointment -- when John Kerry was running for President and Republican Mitt Romney was Governor -- the GOP offered an amendment to have interim appointments. The Democrats, he said, are all on record shooting it down back then. And Tisei says that Dems can't change the rules to fit the new circumstances of a current vacancy.
Tying up the law in court until the de facto time has passed is the goal here, so neither side comes away smelling like roses, but let's be honest here: Both sides are looking to politically profit.