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Obama alum Susan Rice endorses Alan Khazei in race for Kennedy seat

Susan Rice.Matt McClain/The Washington Post/The Washington Post

The competition for high-profile endorsements in the packed Democratic primary in the Fourth Congressional District is heating up.

Former Obama national security adviser Susan E. Rice is endorsing Alan Khazei, a Brookline resident and cofounder of the City Year national service program who is among at least 10 candidates likely to be on the Sept. 1 primary ballot.

"Alan is our country’s preeminent leader in the national service movement. Now, more than ever we need his vision and grassroots, hands-on experience in Congress to scale up national service to address the deep inequities in American society exposed by the COVID-19 pandemic and bring our country back together,” Rice said in a statement, referencing Khazei’s proposal to create a large new service jobs program to help battle the pandemic while also putting young people to work.


The backing of Rice, who also served as ambassador to the United Nations, is the second major foreign policy endorsement Khazei has earned since jumping in the race. Last fall, retired Army General Stanley McChrystal endorsed him.

The race to replace Representative Joseph P. Kennedy III, who is challenging Senator Edward J. Markey in the Democratic primary for the Senate, has drawn a large and diverse field. At least 10 candidates say they have enough signatures to get on the ballot, according to Politico. The pandemic has made it even harder for individual candidates to break through, given the restrictions on traditional campaigning.

Khazei, however, has been one of the most successful at raising cash so far, and ended March with more than $780,000 cash on hand, according to data compiled by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. That puts him second to only Jake Auchincloss, a Newton city councilor, when it comes to campaign cash. Auchincloss ended the first quarter of the year with just over $950,000 cash on hand.


Victoria McGrane can be reached at victoria.mcgrane@globe.com. Follow her @vgmac.