Kennedy Family

Toughest Democratic Race To Take Sides: Ed Markey Vs. Joe Kennedy III In Massachusetts

The toughest Democratic race for Congress is coming to a conclusion on Tuesday, September 1, when Senator Ed Markey of Massachusetts faces Congressman Joe Kennedy III for the nomination for the US Senate.

Both are clearly progressives, but Markey is seen as more Left than Kennedy.

Markey has been endorsed by Congresswoman Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York, New Jersey Senator Cory Booker, former Vice President Al Gore, former Democratic Presidential nominee (1988) Michael Dukakis, documentary creator Ken Burns, Gloria Steinem, Jane Fonda, Carole King, Tom Steyer, many environmental groups, and the Boston Globe Editorial Board, as well as most Massachusetts mayors and many Democrats in the state legislature. and half the Congressional delegation.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has endorsed Kennedy, and the Kennedy Family is, of course, behind Kennedy, and also many Congressmen, including the late John Lewis and Joaquin Castro, but he has alienated many who think he should have waited until Markey retired, or Warren ended up in a potential Joe Biden cabinet.

The seat is guaranteed to whoever wins the primary on Tuesday, as Republicans have not won state wide except with the first African American Senator since Reconstruction (Edward Brooke) decades ago, and Scott Brown, who succeeded Ted Kennedy and then was defeated by Elizabeth Warren.

Markey has served since 1976, 44 years in Congress, starting when he was 30 years old, with 37 in the US House of Representatives, and then he took over John Kerry’s Senate seat when Kerry became Secretary of State under Barack Obama in 2013. In so doing, Markey set a record as the longest serving Congressman, who then ended up in the US Senate at age 67.

Markey is just about the most liberal Democratic Senator, while Kennedy in eight years in the House, and now nearing 40, is also liberal, but it could be argued not as much, whatever that means!

So two men, who started off at 30 and 32 in Congress, now face each other, as the old guy with the long record, and the young guy, who is a Kennedy, but seems likely to lose the primary, based on recent polls, which show Markey 12 points ahead of Kennedy!

This might mean the end of all Kennedys in Massachusetts always winning, and it could be that Joe Kennedy III might not get another chance to go to the Senate, and might not be able to run again for the House of Representatives.

This is quite a gamble by a Kennedy, and it seems likely to be a lost cause!

The inclination of this blogger and author is that if I lived in Massachusetts, I would vote for Markey, but not be happy about rejecting a talented Joe Kennedy III!

This race should not have happened, as Joe III should have waited for either Markey or Warren to leave the Senate, without this pitched battle now coming to its end on Tuesday!

The Kennedy Half Century Began 53 Years Ago Today!

On this day in 1960, John F. Kennedy was nominated for President by the Democratic Party at their national convention in Los Angeles. He went on to a very tight and much debated close victory over Richard Nixon, including widely accepted accusations that his election was fixed in Chicago by Mayor Richard J. Daley!

Kennedy’s impact on the nation was massive, and made greater by the fact that he was assassinated, and even though we learned about his controversial sex life in the White House, and he has faced growing criticism on his policies and actions in office as the years have gone by, it is still a reality that he is adored by vast numbers of the American people, and made out to be an icon!

His brother, Robert Kennedy, was also martyred after a controversial career as Attorney General under his brother, a short Senate career, and his assassination while seeking the Presidency in 1968 to finish the work of his brother.

And then, there was Ted Kennedy, the youngest brother, who was first seen as a lightweight in the Senate, had the scandalous Chappaquiddick incident in which a woman died in his car as it was being driven by a drunk Kennedy, and was totally defeated in his later attempt to take the 1980 Presidential nomination of his party away from President Jimmy Carter.

But Kennedy went on to a distinguished, record setting career of 47 and a half years in the Senate, honored as the “Lion” of the Senate, and regarded as one of the greatest Senate giants in its more than two century history as an institution.

And then there was Joseph Kennedy II, son of Robert Kennedy, who served in the US House of Representatives from Massachusetts for 12 years; Patrick Kennedy, son of Ted, who served in the House from Rhode Island for 16 years; and now Joseph Kennedy III, grandson of Robert Kennedy and son of former Congressman Joe, who serves in the House of Representatives from Massachusetts since the beginning of this year.

And there have been other Kennedys or Kennedy relatives who have been in public office, including Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, daughter of Robert Kennedy, who served as Lieutenant Governor of Maryland; and JFK brother in law Sargant Shriver, who headed the Peace Corps, the War On Poverty, and was Ambassador to France.

So the Kennedy half century of influence is marked today by the JFK nomination for President in 1960, and it continues in politics and in history!

The Kennedys Leave Congress

An era is ending as Patrick Kennedy, Democratic Congressman from Rhode Island and son of the late Senator Ted Kennedy, announced his retirement at the end of this Congress.

There will be no Kennedy family member in Congress in 2011, after having had one or more Kennedys since 1947, with the exception of two years in the early 1960s.

John F. Kennedy served in Congress from 1947-1961 when he was inaugurated President. After a brief two year hiatus, Ted Kennedy was elected to his brother’s Senate seat and served from 1963 to last August, nearly 47 years. In addition, Robert Kennedy served from 1965-1968, and Joe Kennedy, Robert’s son served in the House from 1987-1999, and Patrick from 1995 to the end of this Congress.

This is in many ways a sad moment as the Kennedy Family served well and honorably overall, although of course any politician can be criticized in some way. Still, we owe our gratitude for their public service, as they could have chosen other pursuits but chose to do what they did, and in a way that overall we can admire and salute!