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Senate hopeful Kennedy meets with NY governor

  • Story Highlights
  • NY Gov. David Paterson, Caroline Kennedy talk, but details of meeting unknown
  • Kennedy wants to replace Hillary Clinton as New York senator
  • President Kennedy's daughter has never held public office
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NEW YORK (CNN) -- New York Gov. David Paterson met with Senate hopeful Caroline Kennedy Saturday afternoon, but the governor's spokesman said details of the meeting will be kept private.

Caroline Kennedy hopes to replace Hillary Clinton as New York's junior senator.

Caroline Kennedy hopes to replace Hillary Clinton as New York's junior senator.

Erin Duggan, Paterson's spokesman, said the two met at the governor's Manhattan office about 2 p.m. ET. She would not disclose what the pair talked about, nor say how long the meeting lasted.

Kennedy is one of the candidates hoping to replace Hillary Clinton as New York's junior senator if the Senate confirms Clinton as secretary of state.

Paterson, who has the sole responsibility to replace Clinton, has been the target of intense lobbying efforts by would-be senators in recent weeks.

Clinton has said she is staying out of the process of picking her successor and letting Paterson decide.

Whoever the governor picks would serve for two years before running in a special election in 2010. If the candidate won that contest, that person would have to run again in 2012, when Clinton's current term ends.

Paterson is a Democrat, so the seat is likely to remain in the party's hands.

Kennedy, daughter of the late President John F. Kennedy and niece of longtime Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy, has received the most media attention. However, critics are questioning whether she's ready to follow the political path taken by family members. Video Watch Kennedy discuss political aspirations »

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Kennedy, 51, has been involved in education reform and women's issues, but she has never held public office and has mostly stayed out of the public spotlight.

Polls have shown some New York voters want another Democrat with a famous last name to be appointed to the seat: state Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, son of former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo.

All About Caroline KennedyDavid PatersonHillary Clinton

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