Former Maryland lieutenant governor Kathleen Kennedy Townsend wants to run for the Senate seat being vacated by longtime lawmaker Barbara A. Mikulski — but says that she has not yet decided to launch a campaign.
At a charity event Wednesday evening, Kennedy Townsend told Huffington Post Editor Howard Fineman that she was joining the field of Democrats vying to succeed Mikulski. But Townsend said Thursday morning that no campaign launch was imminent.
“What I said to Howard was my dream,” she told The Washington Post. “I’m still working on putting things together and making a decision.”
The only woman to have served as lieutenant governor in Maryland, Kennedy Townsend has been considering a bid since Mikulski announced her retirement early last month. Thus far, U.S. Reps. Donna Edwards (D) and Chris Van Hollen (D) are the only candidates in the race. Several others may join them, including U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings (D), who has polled likely Democratic primary voters.
Kennedy Townsend is the eldest child of the late Sen. Robert F. Kennedy and Ethel Kennedy. She last ran for office in 2002, when she lost a gubernatorial bid to Republican Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. — another possible Senate candidate.
Since then, she has been active in both the public and private sectors. She has managed the Rock Creek private investment company for the past decade and founded a public policy center at Georgetown University focused on retirement issues.
She also served as chairman of a state retirement task force under then-Gov. Martin O’Malley (D), and has raised money nationally for Democratic candidates.