One has to feel amazed, reading this book, at how PROUD the people of Massachusetts must be of their esteemed senior US senator. First, he was eminently generous to host a party for six young women who had all toiled so hard to assist with his family's politics. You have to know that lower-level campaign workers of their age rarely receive attention from the more powerful folks in the political apparatus. The girls must have been utterly thrilled, to have been asked to a cook-out and get to mingle with all of those seasoned, powerful men. Edward Kennedy was extremely magnanimous, stooping in that fashion to reward the "little people."
Also, the kindness he extended to Ms Kopechne, in offering to drive her back to the mainland after she began feeling tired, was just stupendous. For a busy, powerful man of this nature to offer such a favor to an attractive young woman is simply heart-warming -- it's just not the sort of thing that your typical rich, connected and powerful male will do for a pretty young girl.
And then: Tragedy, a horrible, ghastly accident wherein the senator, unfamiliar with the route, drove his car off a bridge. It could have happened to anyone. But then he redeemed himself in the eyes of his family, of her family, his constituency (the citizens of Massachusetts), and the Almighty, by exerting a superhumanly heroic effort to save her from drowning in the car. Diving repeatedly into the dangerously swift current, heedless of his own life and limb -- what a man! -- he just could not extract her from that watery tomb.
But the senator then did not let anyone down. He immediately assumed full and complete responsibility, proactively contacting authorities and providing a comprehensive, extremely detailed account of the tragedy that answered all possible questions and completely cleared the air. He made his Massachusetts supporters very, very proud of him, and they immediately decided he can be their senator for the rest of his life.
Suffering terrible pain (causing him to need a neck brace), the senator then attended the girl's funeral and comforted her parents -- a godlike gesture from a godlike politician. Edward Kennedy, ambassador of goodness, healer of wounds, dryer of tears, comforter of parents whose daughter gets accidentally drowned and just happens, as fate would have it, not to be clad in any below-the-waist undergarments at the time that older, married man was driving her home.
We all should salute the voters of Massachusetts for their superb choice in senators. If we considered the people of Massachusetts a sort of "holy spirit," then we may rightfully call that state's two divine senators the "father" and the "son." World without end, Amen.