What is it about John Kerry and awkward social situations? The latest flap may be his worst yet and it is providing lots of fun for blogs and talk radio.
If not for images leaked to TMZ.com, news of last weekend’s F’n Beach Party might not have reached beyond Nantucket.
What the hell was he thinking?
Actually, with a number of new revelations, the story’s really just heating up today, providing a whole new dose of talk radio fodder. The Herald’s Track Gals are all over it:
Sen. John Kerry, already under fire after an ill-fated photo op on Nantucket last weekend, was hanging out that same night with a man who is facing charges that he assaulted an island construction worker and the man‚Äôs 11-year-old daughter.
Kirby Jones, 47, an island boat captain, is scheduled for a court hearing after a melee in The Club Car where he allegedly punched out 41-year-old Sean Joslin. Joslin‚Äôs young daughter was injured in the row.
Jones was one of Kerry‚Äôs two companions Saturday night and was photographed with the senator and some booze-swilling coeds on the island‚Äôs Straight Wharf.
‚ÄúSen. Kerry had no knowledge whatsoever of this incident until your phone call,‚Äù said Kerry‚Äôs spokeswoman Brigid O‚ÄôRourke. ‚ÄúMr. Jones was invited to dinner by Kerim Koseatac.‚Äù
Koseatac, the other man with Kerry Saturday night, is the caretaker at the Nantucket manse owned by Kerry‚Äôs wife, ketchup heiress Teresa Heinz. But on Tuesday – before word of the assault allegations trickled to Boston – Kerry aide David Wade described both Koseatac and Jones as the senator‚Äôs ‚Äúfriends.‚Äù
Yesterday, not so much. It seems that Jones, a well-known character on the island, allegedly sucker-punched Joslin Thursday as he sat in The Club Car, an expensive island eatery, with his daughter and a client.
According to Joslin, he and Jones had a run-in several years ago, and when the boat captain entered the eatery, he began talking to Joslin‚Äôs daughter.
And later in the column, they nail it:
So to recap: Kerry was out to dinner with a man he didn‚Äôt know was facing assault charges. After which he was photographed with a group of drinking, college-aged women with penis straws whom he didn‚Äôt know. And no one knows how the pictures wound up on TMZ.
Perhaps the senator should just stay home . . . .
We don’t think of Kerry as a wild party guy, so what was he up to? Was this just a case of accidentally socializing with commoners (seems hard to believe in his case), or part of a calculated move to reshape his sullen, wooden image? I’m going with the former.
The bigger question: though Ted K could probably escape unharmed from this kind of publicity, Kerry is another story. He isn’t terribly popular here and not known to spend a lot of time dealing with Bay State issues. Will this hurt him politically?