(FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com) – Congressman Ed Markey has thrown his hat into the 2013 race for the US Senate seat expected to open with Pres. Barack Obama's nomination of Mass. Sen. John Kerry for Secretary of State.
Markey said in a statement that the events of recent weeks, from the devastation of Hurricane Sandy and the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary to the fiscal cliff debate, have made it clear Massachusetts needs a senator with what he called the "right priorities and values."
"I have decided to run for the US Senate because this fight is too important. There is so much at stake," Markey said.
A person familiar with Markey's decision told the Boston Globe that the congressman sees the US Senate as a better opportunity to influence policies while the GOP controls the US House of Representatives.
In November, Markey, a Democrat, beat out opponent Tom Tierney winning the race in the newly redrawn 5th Congressional District. He is a ranking member of the Natural Resource Committee and a senior member of the Energy and Commerce Committee.
Rep. Markey is 66-years-old and lives in Malden.
The special election for Kerry's seat is expected to be crowded, especially among Democrats, who have no clear front-runner. Markey could be up against Congressman Michael Capuano, Congressman Stephen Lynch, and Republican Sen. Scott Brown.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.