Martin Luther King III is officially throwing his support behind Rep. Joe KennedyJoseph (Joe) Patrick KennedySupreme Court confounding its partisan critics Warren says she'll run for reelection to Senate Five centrist Democrats oppose Pelosi for Speaker in tight vote MORE III (D-Mass.) ahead of the contested Massachusetts Democratic Senate primary next month.
King, the son of the civil rights icon, said Kennedy would fight for racial justice.
"My father said the ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy," King said in a video released by Kennedy's campaign on Friday.
“Throughout his career, Joe has fought for the silenced and ignored, the oppressed, and left behind. He legislates and leads from our streets and communities –– for and with the people most in need."— Joe Kennedy III (@joekennedy) August 14, 2020
— @OfficialMLK3 pic.twitter.com/rN8VFqTdDB
Kennedy is the grandson of former Attorney General and Sen. Robert F. Kennedy (D-N.Y.), who played a pivotal role in the civil rights movement, working with King Jr. in the 1960s.
He is challenging incumbent Sen. Ed MarkeyEd MarkeyOvernight Energy & Environment — Presented by Climate Power — Senate Democrats ding Biden energy proposal Six Democrats blast Energy Department's uranium reserve pitch Facebook draws lawmaker scrutiny over Instagram's impact on teens MORE (D-Mass.) in Massachusett's Democratic Senate primary, which has split Democrats in the Bay State and on Capitol Hill.
The RealClearPolitics polling average shows Kennedy up 5 points in the race. Kennedy and Markey will face off on Sept. 1.
"I know he [Kennedy] will never stop demanding justice. He is a leader we so desperately need in this moment to bring us to a higher moral ground," King said. "It's clear to me that Joe Kennedy stands with all of us. That's why we need him in the United States Senate."
King's endorsement comes amid nationwide protests and discussions on racial injustice, spurred in part by the police killings of unarmed Black individuals including George Floyd and Breonna Taylor.
"We need a new generation of civil rights leaders that will fight for racial justice and equality in all its forms," King said in the video.