The Brother Who Mattered Most

His brothers Jack and Bobby are part of modern American mythology, but Ted may just be the Kennedy who mattered most

Jessica Rinaldi / Reuters / Corbis

Senator Edward Kennedy, waiting to be introduced to an audience at the University of Massachusetts in Boston on Feb. 4, 2005

There was a time 40 years ago, right after the assassination of his brother Robert, when it looked like Edward Kennedy would become President someday by right of succession. The Kennedy curse, the one that had seen all three of his brothers cut down in their prime, had created for him a sort of Kennedy prerogative, or at least the illusion of one, an inevitable claim on the White House. For years he seemed like a man simply waiting for the right moment to take what everybody knew was coming his way.

Everybody was wrong. Ted...

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