A Joe Kennedy has announced that he is running for the vacant senate seat of Ted Kennedy in Massachusetts.

No, not that Kennedy, this is Joseph Lewis Kennedy, running as a Libertarian candidate, though he is officially an independent.

He collected over 18,00 signatures to get his name on the ballot. Democrats are afraid that his name will siphon votes away from their candidate, Martha Coakley.

There is a long history in the state of name changing, sometimes from Italian to Irish names and like-named candidates running to damage others.

But Joe Kennedy is an actual person. The Boston Globe says he can hardly believe he’s on the ballot himself.

"There are people in this state that love the Kennedys, and there’s people that don’t,’’ Joseph L. Kennedy told the Globe.

“But we’re going to do everything we can to make sure people know I’m Joe Kennedy from Dedham.’’
“Every single time I’ve looked at Democratic or Republican candidates, I just see two sides of the same coin,’’ Kennedy said in an interview.

“They’re both willing to take our liberties, they continue their war mongering, and they’re forgetting about the one thing that keeps us great, the economy, jobs, and our freedom.”

“I have a desk that I go to every day, and I know what people who pay taxes care about,’’ he said. “I’m that guy, too.’’

“We’re not embracing diversity in this country anymore,’’ he said. “We’re watering everything down. It’s about letting everybody do everything they want to do, as opposed to letting no one do anything they want to do. That’s why I’m running.’’

The most important issue right now, he believes, is jobs and the economy. As for his long shot candidacy he says: “It might sound like this is an unbelievable, daunting task,’’ he said. “But I’ve done more than anybody . . . thought."

Kennedy was adopted by a family after being put in foster care when he was just a few days old.