Congressman Joe Kennedy is set to announce a Democratic primary challenge to U.S. Senator Edward Markey of Massachusetts in 2020. A person with knowledge of Kennedy's plans told The Associated Press he will formally make the announcement Saturday.
The person wasn't authorized to pre-empt Kennedy's announcement and spoke Wednesday on condition of anonymity. The 38-year-old grandson of Robert Kennedy has been weighing a decision for several weeks. Kennedy spoke with reporters this past Saturday in Springfield saying he would make a decision on a Senate run soon.
"I don't think primaries is something that people should shy away from,” Kennedy said. “The idea behind it is that every seat, my own included, the one that I currently occupy as a member of the House of Representatives, it's up every two years. It's a two-year term. You have to go out and make that case to voters every two years. I don't think that's something that anybody should shy away from, about saying, 'Hey, are you uneasy about making that case?' And putting the choice before voters about where they stand."
The 73-year-old Markey is also facing Steve Pemberton and Shannon Liss-Riordan in next year’s primary.
A Kennedy-Markey duel could put more than a few high-profile Democrats in an awkward position — most notably Democratic presidential candidate Elizabeth Warren. Warren has worked with Markey in the Senate and taught Kennedy at Harvard Law School. She has formally endorsed Markey.