Kennedy funeral procession arrives in Boston

Sen. Edward Kennedy's (D-Mass.) body arrived at his brother’s presidential library Thursday as lawmakers around the country made plans to attend Saturday's funeral.

Following a brief, private Mass held in a large sunroom facing the ocean at the Kennedys’ Hyannis Port house, the senator’s flag-covered coffin was taken in a hearse that wound through the streets of Boston for about three hours before reaching the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library on a nearby point.

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The funeral procession followed a route lined with well-wishers and punctuated with family memories — the church where Kennedy’s mother was baptized, the downtown building that housed his Senate office, another where he worked as an assistant district attorney and eventually the presidential museum where his brother is memorialized.

Dozens of lawmakers are scrambling to attend either the funeral or burial for Kennedy, who died at 77 late Tuesday night after a 15-month battle with brain cancer.

Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry Mason ReidGOP poised to advance rules change to speed up Trump nominees Dems walk tightrope on Pompeo nomination The Memo: Teens rankle the right with gun activism MORE (D-Nev.), Majority Whip Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinTo succeed in Syria, Democrats should not resist Trump policy Hannity, Kimmel, Farrow among Time's '100 Most Influential' The Hill's Morning Report: 200 Days to the Election MORE (D-Ill.) and Democratic Conference Vice Chairman Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerCan Mueller be more honest than his colleagues? Throwing some cold water on all of the Korean summit optimism House Republicans push Mulvaney, Trump to rescind Gateway funds MORE (N.Y.) all plan to attend Saturday’s funeral, but not the burial at Arlington National Cemetery. Schumer also plans to attend Friday night’s two-hour “Celebration of Life” memorial service, styled after an Irish wake.

Among Republican leaders, Minority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP senator: Democratic opposition to Pompeo 'driven 100 percent by politics' Pompeo lacks votes for positive vote on panel GOP poised to advance rules change to speed up Trump nominees MORE (Ky.) plans to attend Saturday’s funeral, but not the burial. GOP Policy Chairman John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneHouse, Senate GOP compete for cash Overnight Tech: Alleged robocall kingpin testifies before Congress | What lawmakers learned | Push for new robocall rules | Facebook changes privacy settings ahead of new data law | Time Warner CEO defends AT&T merger at trial Senators grill alleged robocall kingpin MORE of South Dakota and Sen. Mike EnziMichael (Mike) Bradley EnziAmerica's budget deficit is a ticking time bomb Abolishing Budget Committee hits a symptom, not the disease Supreme Court weighs future of online sales taxes MORE of Wyoming, the ranking member of Kennedy’s Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, aren’t attending either event. Travel plans were unavailable for GOP Whip Jon Kyl of Arizona and Senate Republican Conference Chairman Lamar AlexanderAndrew (Lamar) Lamar AlexanderThe risk of kicking higher ed reauthorization down the road Maternal deaths keep rising in US, raising scrutiny Supreme Court weighs future of online sales taxes MORE of Tennessee.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) will attend the funeral in Boston, as will House Education and Labor Committee Chairman George Miller (D-Calif.). Other members, like Rep. Xavier BecerraXavier BecerraTrump's EPA quietly revamps rules for air pollution Flurry of lawsuits filed over citizenship question on census Trump continues to put Americans first by adding citizenship question to census MORE (D-Calif.), vice chairman of the House Democratic Caucus, are planning to attend the burial at Arlington but are not making the trip to Boston.

Overall, an international retinue including Ireland’s Prime Minister Brian Cowen is expected to join at least 44 sitting senators and 10 former senators, including Birch Bayh (D-Ind.), who rescued Kennedy from a 1964 plane crash in Massachusetts, according to The Associated Press.

Kennedy’s body is to lie in repose at the JFK Library throughout Thursday night and all day and night on Friday. President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaNRATV host says Obama owes Parkland students an apology over shooting Paltry wage gains, rising deficits two key tax reform concerns Throwing some cold water on all of the Korean summit optimism MORE is scheduled to deliver a eulogy at Saturday’s funeral.

A private burial ceremony is planned for 5 p.m. Saturday at Arlington National Cemetery, near the graves of President John F. Kennedy and Attorney General Robert Kennedy. So far, the sole public event scheduled is a brief “rolling stop” at the Senate’s east steps sometime after 3:30 p.m. Saturday.

The Senate sergeant at arms’s office is coordinating travel for senators, and has at least one bus to take senators to Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland, where they will board a plane to fly to an undisclosed airfield in the Boston area. Details are still being planned.

“I think senators and their families and spouses are still making arrangements to get here,” said Terry Gainer, the Senate sergeant at arms.

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The Senate sergeant at arms's office is in charge of all large congressional movement to and from the Capitol — such as when lawmakers travel to political conventions — and tightly coordinates its efforts with local police. In Kennedy’s case, with all of the living presidents expected to join Obama in Boston, the office has also been working closely with the Secret Service.

An extreme example of a scrambling lawmaker is Rep. James McGovern (D-Mass.), who heard the news of Kennedy’s death while on a congressional delegation trip to Iraq and Afghanistan. McGovern cut that trip short and embarked on a marathon 26-hour journey from Kabul to Boston, with stops in Kuwait and Germany along the way, to ensure arrival in Boston for the Kennedy funeral.

“When we heard the news, there was never a question of whether Jim would come back, but how fast he could make it,” said Michael Mershon, spokesman for McGovern.

“Ted Kennedy was always there for him. Always. And it went beyond the political and legislative stuff. When Jim and Lisa’s first child was born, the very first call that Jim got at the hospital was from Ted Kennedy. And he wants to be there to say goodbye.”

McGovern is expected to arrive in Boston on Friday afternoon to attend the public viewing in addition to the funeral on Saturday.

Many lawmakers rearranged their plans so they could attend the Boston service or the burial service Saturday evening. Sen. Mark BegichMark Peter BegichPerez creates advisory team for DNC transition The future of the Arctic 2016’s battle for the Senate: A shifting map MORE (D-Alaska), for example, postponed a trip for Sens. Barbara BoxerBarbara Levy BoxerThe ‘bang for the buck’ theory fueling Trump’s infrastructure plan Kamala Harris endorses Gavin Newsom for California governor Dems face hard choice for State of the Union response MORE (D-Calif.), Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersSanders ally pushes Dems on cutting superdelegates Sanders: ‘Trump's agenda is dead’ if Democrats win back majority Hannity snaps back at 'Crybaby' Todd: 'Only conservatives have to disclose relationships?' MORE (I-Vt.), Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) and Debbie StabenowDeborah (Debbie) Ann StabenowSenators push HHS to negotiate lower prices on opioid overdose reversal drug Senators press administration on mental health parity Progressive groups launch M midterm initiative in three battleground states MORE (D-Mich.) to come to Alaska this weekend to view examples of the effects of climate change.

Though the Senate sergeant at arms's office will fly senators back from Boston to Andrews Air Force Base, the office will have a small role in getting the lawmakers to the Arlington service if they plan on attending.

“Because that’s a private event, there will be much less involvement by the sergeant at arms's office,” Gainer said of the Arlington burial service. “But we’re still working with the family as to how we’ll do that. I do believe that it will be largely driven by the family and the invitations, so we’ll have a negligible role in that.”