Markey announces Senate candidacy in Mass.
Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., became the first major candidate in either party to announce a bid for John Kerry's soon-to-be-vacated Senate seat today, telling the Boston Globe, "I have decided to run for the US Senate because this fight is too important. There is so much at stake."
"With Senator Kerry's departure, Massachusetts voters will decide once again whether we want a Senator who will fight for all our families or one who supports a Republican agenda that benefits only the powerful and well-connected," Markey said. "I refuse to allow the Tea-Party dominated Republican Party to lead us off the fiscal cliff and into recession. I won't allow the National Rifle Association to obstruct an assault weapons ban yet again. I will not sit back and allow oil and coal industry lobbyists to thwart our clean energy future or extremists to restrict women's rights and health care."
Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick, a Democrat, has said he will appoint a placeholder to fill Kerry's seat until a special election later in 2013 produces a victor. President Obama announced last week that he will nominate Kerry as his next Secretary of State to replace Hillary Clinton, who is expected to step down in the coming weeks. When Kerry is confirmed and he resigns from the Senate, Patrick's placeholder will be sworn in and the special election in which Markey will run will be held within 145 to 160 days to fill the remainder of Kerry's term.
Markey, who is the dean of Massachusetts' Washington delegation and the ranking member on the House's Natural Resources Committee, was perhaps best known in recent years as the co-author, with Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif., of the 2009 "American Clean Energy and Security Act," better known as "cap and trade," which passed the House in June 2009.
Two other Bay State Democrats, Reps. Michael Capuano and Stephen Lynch, have expressed interest in running in the special election for Kerry's seat but have not yet formalized a bid.
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The Republican field for the special election remains a mystery, but many national Republicans would like to see incumbent Sen. Scott Brown, who was defeated in November by Democrat Elizabeth Warren, launch a bid for Kerry's seat. Brown has not indicated whether he will run again, but his farewell speech to the Senate, in which he told colleagues, "We may obviously meet again," stirred speculation that he is mulling another bid.
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