Joe Kennedy III suffers stinging defeat to Ed Markey in Mass. Senate primary

He’s the first Kennedy to lose a race for Congress in Massachusetts.

Rep. Joe Kennedy III suffered a stinging defeat in a challenge to incumbent Sen. Ed Markey in Tuesday’s Democratic primaries in Massachusetts.

The 74-year-old Markey, who boasts a four decade long congressional career, opened with a large lead in early returns. By 10 p.m., he had garnered 55 percent of the vote to Kennedy’s 45 percent, according to Politico.

The 39-year-old grandson of Robert F. Kennedy promised a new generation of leadership, hitting Markey on the issue of racial inequity — while also highlighting his family’s political legacy.

But it never became quite clear why he chose to take on Markey, who had been given an edge by a number of recent polls.

The senator portrayed Kennedy as a “progressive in name only,” while touting his own lefty chops, including his introduction of the Green New Deal climate change initiative and his working-class background.

The race also served as a kind of proxy between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who endorsed Kennedy, and New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who backed Markey, with whom she introduced the Green New Deal legislation.

In the general election, Markey will face lawyer Kevin O’Connor, who defeated fellow Republican Shiva Ayyadurai in the GOP Senate primary on Tuesday.

With Post wires

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