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New Kennedy Pollster (posted Sept. 6, 2001)
Congressman Patrick Kennedy has hired a new pollster, Tom Kiley, to track public opinion during Kennedy's upcoming re-election bid. Kiley replaces Tubby Harrison, who was Kennedy's pollster in his last competitive election in 1994.

The move is interesting because Kiley also serves as pollster to Kennedy's father, Senator Ted Kennedy. During Patrick Kennedy's 1994 bid for Congress, he and his staff went to great lengths to have a consulting staff separate from his father's political operation.

In the book, Patrick Kennedy: The Rise to Power, then Kennedy aide Tony Marcella explained why the two Kennedys did not share consultants: "We didn't want to be the Kennedy machine from Massachusetts that was reaching into Rhode Island....We never did that. We split the campaign from day one. We got our own media people. We got our own pollster." According to Marcella, the separation was part of Patrick Kennedy's desire to establish his own identity.

Now with the firing of Marcella and the hiring of a new chief of staff with close ties to the Kennedy family, Patrick Kennedy is moving into a new phase of closer ties to his father's political operation and less need for personal independence.
Copyright 2000Karen Martin Media Services