Posted: 09/2/09Filed Under:Ted Kennedy The late Sen. Edward Kennedy expressed remorse over the death of Mary Jo Kopechne, said he accepted the findings of the Warren Commission, and told Bill Clinton he would stand by him after the former president confessed to his affair with Monica Lewinsky, according to Kennedy's soon-to-be released memoir.
The New York Times obtained a copy of the 532-page book, "True Compass," scheduled to be published Sept. 14. In it, Kennedy, who died Aug. 25 at age 77, talked about his battle against the brain cancer that claimed his life and his "self-destructive drinking."
Among other issues cited by Kennedy and reported by the Times:
-- Kennedy called his actions after the July 1969 car accident on Chappaquiddick Island in Massachusetts that killed Kopechne "inexcusable" and admitted he "made terrible decisions." Kennedy did not summon emergency personnel or even report the accident until the following morning.
-- Said he had always accepted the findings of the Warren Commission, which investigated the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
-- Suggests that President Kennedy "was increasingly convinced that the conflict (in Vietnam) could not be resolved militarily," the Times reported.
-- Explained that he decided to seek the presidency in 1980 in part because of differences with then-President Jimmy Carter. Kennedy felt Carter's approach to health care reform "was squandering a real opportunity to get something done," the Times quoted the book as saying. Kennedy also lamented that health care didn't pass during the Clinton years, but did not blame the president or his wife, Hillary, who oversaw the effort.
-- Said he called Clinton right after his televised confession of his affair with Lewinsky, "reassuring Mr. Clinton he would stand by the president during this difficult period," the Times reported.
"True Compass" was originally slated for publication in 2010. The publisher, a division of Hachette Book Group, moved up the release date to this October after Kennedy was diagnosed with inoperable brain cancer. Three weeks ago, the publisher decided to again move up publication to mid-September.