Sen. Ted Kennedy and his niece Caroline Kennedy on Monday announced their endorsement of Barack Obama for president, but now three other prominent members of the Kennedy clan have come out in support of his chief rival Hillary Clinton.
Three of Robert F. Kennedy’s children — Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, former lieutenant governor of Maryland; Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an environmental activist; and Kerry Kennedy, a human rights activist — have written a letter to the Los Angeles Times expressing their support of Hillary.
“This is a wonderful year for Democrats. Our party is blessed with the most impressive array of primary candidates in modern history. All would make superb presidents,” the letter begins.
“By now you may have read or heard that our cousin, Caroline Kennedy, and our uncle, Sen. Edward M. Kennedy, have come out in favor of Sen. Barack Obama. We, however, are supporting Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton because we believe that she is the strongest candidate for our party and our country.
“While talk of unity and compromise are inspiring to a nation wary of divisiveness, America stands at a historic crossroads where real issues divide our political landscapes. Democrats believe that America should not be torturing people, eavesdropping on our citizens or imprisoning them without habeas corpus or other constitutional rights. We should not be an imperial power. We need healthcare for all and a clean, safe environment.
“The loftiest poetry will not solve these issues. We need a president willing to engage in a fistfight to safeguard and restore our national virtues.
“We have worked with Hillary Clinton for 15 years (and in Kathleen's case, 25 years) and witnessed the power and depth of her convictions firsthand. We've seen her formidable work ethic, courage in the face of adversity and her dignity and clear head in crisis. We've also seen her two-fisted willingness to enter the brawl when America's principles are challenged…”
The three vowed to work beside Clinton in the general election, and went on to say:
“Like our father, Hillary has devoted her life to embracing and including those on the bottom rung of society's ladder -- giving voice to the alienated and disenfranchised and working to alleviate poverty and injustice, while urging that we cannot advance ourselves as a nation by leaving our poorer brothers and sisters behind…
“We need a leader who is battle-tested, resilient and sure-footed on the shifting landscapes of domestic and foreign policy. Hillary Clinton will move our country forward while promoting its noblest ideals.”
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