Joe Kennedy Formally Announces His Bid for US Senate

September 21, 2019 Updated: September 21, 2019

Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D-Mass.) has announced on Saturday, Sept. 21 that he has officially launched his campaign for the U.S. Senate for 2020.

“We have a Senate that instead of trying to harness the opportunity and potential of every person in this country, they’re trying to pull us back,” Kennedy told reporters at his official campaign launch event in East Boston, according to CNN.

“And I’m running for the United States Senate to tear that down, to fight back with everything we’ve got.”

Earlier in the day, Kennedy made his announcement on Twitter, saying that, “this is the fight of our lives, the fight of my generation—and I’m all in,” Kennedy wrote in a Twitter post accompanied by a campaign video.

Joe Kennedy is the 38-year-old grandson of late Robert F. Kennedy, a former U.S. attorney general and senator who was assassinated in 1968 while running for president. Moreover, he is the great-nephew of the late President John F. Kennedy and the late Massachusetts Sen. Edward Kennedy.

He will face Sen. Edward Markey (D-Mass.) in next year’s primary. Markey has served in Congress for more than four decades.

Markey is already facing two other primary challenges from lawyer Shannon Liss-Riordan and former senior executive at Walgreens, Steve Pemberton.

Kennedy, who was first elected to Congress in 2012, is seen as a rising star in the Democratic party. He was chosen to deliver the Democratic response to President Donald Trump’s State of the Union address in 2018.

He is also expected to highlight the generation contrast with 73-year-old Markey during his campaign. “It’s not the time for waiting, for sitting on the sidelines, for playing by rules that don’t work anymore or never worked to begin with,” Kennedy said in his campaign video.

“We deserve leaders who show up where we are, who aren’t afraid to break down an old system and build something better.”

Like Markey, Kennedy said he supports the Green New Deal, a plan introduced by Democratic socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to tackle climate change and could cost as much $93 trillion, according to one estimate. He has also adopted other progressive policy positions such as supporting the “Medicare for All” bill in the House.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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