\"Joseph

Joseph P. Kennedy III, the son of former Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy II and a grandson of the late Robert F. Kennedy. Photo by: AP Photo/Elise Amendola

Joseph Kennedy III to publicly announce he is running for Congress

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Joseph P. Kennedy III, the son of former Rep. Joseph P. Kennedy II and a grandson of the late Robert F. Kennedy. Photo by: AP Photo/Elise Amendola

Joseph Kennedy III is to follow in the family tradition and contest the race for a Massachusetts congressional seat in the 4th District.

If he wins, he would put the Kennedy family back in national politics. Since Congressman Patrick Kennedy retired last November, it is the first time since 1946 that a Kennedy has not been either elected to the US senate or the house.

Back then, John Fitzgerald Kennedy replaced the legendary James Michael Curley that year when Curley ran for Mayor of Boston. Now JFK’s grandnephew is set to take up the torch.

The 31-year-old lawyer is to enter the election to succeed retiring U.S. Rep. Barney Frank.

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Kennedy is expected to formally announce his candidature on Thursday, according to a member of his campaign team who has spoken to the Associated Press.

A recent UMass Lowell/Boston Herald poll handed him a huge early lead in the race trouncing Republican hopeful Sean Bielat by a 68-28 percent margin.

Bielat ran a heated contest against Frank in the 2010 midterm elections.

Kennedy recently quit his job as a Middlesex assistant district attorney and moved from Cambridge to Brookline, part of the state’s newly redrawn 4th Congressional District.

Son of former U.S. Rep. Joseph Kennedy II and a grandson of the late Robert F. Kennedy, he is following in a proud family tradition.

The Kennedys have deep ties to the Boston suburb as well as to Cape Cod.

Prior to working for the Middlesex district attorney, Kennedy was a prosecutor in the Cape and Islands District Attorney’s office.

Last month, Kennedy announced he was forming an exploratory committee to look at running for the seat. He also became engaged to Lauren Anne Birchfield, a fellow Harvard Law School graduate.

Already Kennedy’s likely campaign has received a boost thanks to his political heritage. Kennedy will be in the public eye on Friday when his family will meet and greet with Irish Prime Minister Enda Kenny on his visit to the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum as part of his three day visit to the US.

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