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Senatorial Privilege: The Chappaquiddick Cover-up Hardcover – May 15, 1988

4.3 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 496 pages
  • Publisher: Regnery Publishing, Inc.; First Edition edition (May 15, 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0895265648
  • ISBN-13: 978-0895265647
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #230,020 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I bought this book in July of 2000, after watching an extraordinary 2-hour installment about the story on A&E's "Investigative Reports" (also available on videotape). The author here, Leo Damore, was also part of the television program. Just as the video holds up to repeated viewing, so have I found I've returned more than once to the book. Called 'the most famous traffic fatality in American politics,' it certainly remains that.
'Profile in Courage' this is not. I was 15 the summer of this accident and then had only a teenager's curiosity about it. One more 'Kennedy tragedy,' but this one proves to be one that could have and should have been avoided. I distinctly remember the carried-on-all-networks 'statement' the senator gave days late, stage-managed to nth. And not very believable. What I hadn't remembered was that even without Chappaquiddick, it was hardly a slow news week; it was the same weekend we'd first landed on the moon. According to the book, the latest mishap of the Kennedy family's pushed the moon story to the bottom of page one of "The Boston Globe." I remember the cute neck brace too, which apparently didn't go on for one or two days after the accident, and after many sources in the book had noticed no incapacity in the senator. It would be a pleasure to say 'No one today could get away with the circumvention and manipulation of law enforcement and investigation that was at work here. But don't expect to hear it from someone who sat through nine 1995 months of the Simpson criminal proceedings. If Robert Blake walks too, good luck un-convincing me that the rich and famous get away with it every time.
Damore relies heavily on the recollections of Joseph A. Gargan, a Kennedy insider, and one of the first people the senator confessed the accident to.
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Format: Hardcover
Ted Kennedy, after consuming numerous alcoholic beverages, leaves a private party with a young lady not his wife. His wife, you see, is pregnant and is at home back in Massachussetts.

Sen. Kennedy is driving with a suspended license.

A local peace officer wonders if Kennedy's car is lost after seeing it first go one way and then back up and start going a different way. He approaches it on foot. The car then takes off at a high rate of speed.

Shortly after this, the car drives off of Chappaquiddick Bridge, flips over and lands upside down in 8 feet of water. Sen. Kennedy exits the vehicle. The young woman with him does not.

For the next 9 hours, instead of simply calling the police and rescue workers, Sen. Kennedy desperately goes to work on an alibi.

Kennedy confesses the accident to two people, one of whom is his cousin and lawyer, Joseph Gargan. They press him to report the accident, which he is understandably reluctant to do. The two men press Kennedy so much, he surprises them by shouting that he will report the accident and then dives into the lake and swims the harbor to the hotel where he was staying.

Taking Kennedy at his word, Gargan and the other man remain on the Island. In the morning, Gargan is stunned to find Kennedy chatting with friends and getting ready to head for breakfast.

Not only did Kennedy not report the accident, he also took pains to be seen by a hotel staff member late that night and madee a point of asking the man what time it was.

Two fishermen discovered the upside down car next to the bridge that morning, while Kennedy was still feverishly working on his alibi.

To drink and drive is a crime. To flee the scene of an accident is a crime.
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Format: Hardcover
There is no Kennedy bashing in this book, just the truth. How can a reporter rely too heavily on witnesses? The facts are plain. He did it, she was alive in the car as was proven in court even though the judge (the best one Kennedy money can buy) would not allow ANY testimony stating the fact she was.

Only a great catch of the prosecution to the use of the word "froth" would make this possible. He lied about it, tried to cover it up, tried to get someone else to take the blame for it.. The Kennedy family bought the silence of the Kopechne family for a mere $100,000 and immediately went into the ignore it and it will go away phase.

This book is a must read for America to see how the Kennedy family manipulates the truth and the facts to wiggle out of the responibilty for their CONTINUING list of transgressions. Leo Damore presents it all in a consice edition that will outrage any normal law abiding citizen. It is sickening to read how Teddy is instantly more concerned about saving his political career than the life of the girl (the one without the panties) trapped inside his car.... and he got away with it. again.
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Format: Hardcover
As far as the murky facts surrounding Ted Kennedy's 1969 accident at Chappaquidick are concerned, Leo Damore's book Senatorial Priviledge is probably the best collection of what few things can definitely be said to be true. While the book will disappoint those looking for a definite, unimpeachable case against Ted Kennedy, it does do a good job of laying out the bare facts of the case and, for all but the most partisan of readers, it will be hard to avoid the conclusion that Ted Kennedy managed to cheat justice. While the portrait of Kennedy that emerges will not satisfy those looking for a cold-blooded murderer in the Senatorial cloakroom, it's still a disturbing portrait of an irresponsible, immature man who -- for whatever reason -- has been allowed to grow into an adult without learning how to take responsibility for his actions, no matter what the consequences. If the book does have any truly serious flaw, it is that once again Chappaquidick's true victim, Mary Jo Kopechne, is reduced to a cipher, almost an after thought. Beyond the fact that she died in Kennedy's car, very little is revealed about who Kopechne was or who she might have been had she lived. Despite the book's honorable intentions (most of which it achieves), Mary Jo Kopechne's tragedy is once again allowed to be overshadowed by the Kennedys' crimes.
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