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March 4, 2020


The Markey campaign continues to dodge any commitment to restrict outside money in Senate race

WATERTOWN, MA -- It has been 161 days since Congressman Joe Kennedy III first called on Senator Ed Markey to sign the People’s Pledge. Since then, Senator Markey 1) has refused to sign the Pledge despite having championed the very same pledge in his previous campaigns, and 2) continues to float the idea of an alternative, weaker pledge without providing details on what exactly that would look like to the Kennedy campaign.

Kennedy first called on Senator Markey to sign the People’s Pledge in September, and did so again in a video posted on Twitter just before their first public debate in February. Both times Markey refused to sing the Pledge, and according to January reports, Markey allies have been actively working to set up a Super PAC that would raise $1 million dollars for Markey in this race.

The Markey campaign has since touted an alternative pledge they claim protects “positive” and “progressive” voices in the race. Although Markey continues to mention this “positive pledge” on the campaign trail, the Kennedy campaign has yet to receive a formal proposal or any details outlining what this pledge would look like.

Furthermore, both the Kennedy campaign and the press have continued to press Markey on the legitimacy of a “positive pledge,” and have asked who would decide which voices are positive or not. Congressman Kennedy made it very clear in the last debate that in order to protect our systems in Massachusetts, we cannot allow PAC money to influence our elections -- a tactic used by the Koch Brothers and other cosnervative groups to stifle progressive voices in elections across the country.

“Dark money is dark money,” Kennedy said. “If we allow outside groups we like to influence our elections, we open the floodgates for other groups too. The People’s Pledge stands against more than negative advertising -- it takes a stand against untraceable and unlimited money in any form.”

From the Trail:

Joe is running an energetic, diverse, inclusive, tireless and creative grassroots campaign across the entire state.

In just the first 90 days, Joe visited over 70 cities and has not slowed down. In January alone, he held 13 town hall meetings, with crowds of several hundred, in every corner of the state -- two completely in Spanish.

Joe continues to prioritize places and people that are all too often left out of the political process. He has spent his time visiting immigrant families working to make ends meet in Chelsea and Everett, veterans struggling to access proper mental health care in Somerville and Holyoke, working men and women on the picket line in Lawrence and Dedham, individuals with developmental disabilities in Brockton, and fishermen fighting for their future in Gloucester. He has visited community health centers, shelters, and clinics on the frontlines of the opioid epidemic in North Adams, Hyannis, Fitchburg and Boston. He has discussed environmental justice in Chelsea and Roxbury, racial disparities in maternal healthcare in Worcester, criminal justice in Springfield and clean energy in New Bedford.

Joe has offered a progressive policy platform on the major issues facing Massachusetts families. Read more here.

On the trail, he continues to earn the support from a rising generation of diverse leaders across Massachusetts, including: State Senator Eric Lesser, State Senator Diana DiZoglio, State Senator Adam Hinds, State Senator Joe Boncore, State Representative Jon Santiago, Boston City Councilor Matt O’Malley, Chelsea City Councilor Judith Garcia, Greenfield City Council President Ashli Stempel, Lawrence City Council President Kendrys Vazquez, Worcester City Councilor Sarai Rivera, Brockton City Councilor Rita Mendes, Springfield City Councilors Justin Hurst, Adam Gomez and Trayce Whitfield, Brookline Select Board Member Raul Fernandez, Berkshire District Attorney Andrea Harrington, and many others.

He continues to stand proudly with labor in the fight for jobs, fair wages and real economic justice. Kennedy is organized labor’s pick in this race, having been endorsed by 27 labor unions across the Commonwealth, including: the Massachusetts Laborers, the Machinists Statewide Council, Machinists Local 264, Teamsters Local 25, Sprinkler Fitters 550, Pipefitters Local 537, IBEW 103, 104, 1505, 223, 455, 326, 2325, 2321, 1499, & 2222, UWA 369, Carmen Union 589, Sheet Metal Workers Local 17, IUOE Local 4, UFCW local 791, the Boston Musicians Association Local 9-535, Ironworkers Local 7, the Plymouth/Bristol County Regional Labor Council, the Norfolk County Regional Labor Council, North Atlantic States Regional Council of Carpenters, and Eastern Millwrights Regional Council.

Joe is grateful for the support of a diverse group of his colleagues in Congress, from civil rights hero John Lewis to Progressive Caucus Chair Mark Pocan, New England colleagues Annie Kuster and David Cicilline, LBGTQ Caucus Leader Sean Patrick Maloney and rising leaders Joaquin Castro and Stephanie Murphy.

Kennedy for Massachusetts has opened up five campaign offices across the state, with more to come. With offices in Roxbury, Watertown, Lowell, Worcester and Springfield so far, Kennedy for Massachusetts has prioritized building a strong local presence in every corner of the state, which will serve as the foundation of a massive grassroots operation.

Joe shows up. Joe listens. Joes will do more than fight for you -- he’ll fight with you.

Posted on March 4, 2020 in Press Releases.