BOSTON (CBS) – Next up for Sen. Ed Markey after his decisive win over Joe Kennedy? “Removing Donald Trump from the White House,” he said Wednesday.

But along the way, Markey must dispatch the challenger nominated by Republicans last night, trial lawyer and political newcomer Kevin O’Connor of Dover, who tells WBZ News he’s running because, “I don’t want our kids growing up in the dystopian world that some people want to take us to.”

What does that mean? O’Connor says he was appalled by what he saw in the Democratic primary debates on the subject of police reform.

“They couldn’t muster up the courage to say that cops are good people, they have really tough jobs, and for all their challenges they may not be perfect but we owe them a deep debt of gratitude,” he said.

O’Connor visited Wednesday morning with police in Malden, Markey’s hometown, and claims they endorsed Kennedy’s primary critique – seconded by O’Connor – Markey is aloof and out of touch.

Sen. Ed Markey and Republican challenger Kevin O’Connor (WBZ-TV)

But with President Trump struggling to reach 30 percent approval in Massachusetts, Markey’s counter strategy is clear. “I really don’t know a lot about my Republican opponent right now, other than the fact that he says he is an ardent Donald Trump supporter,” said Markey.

“I’m voting for the president, absolutely, yes,” said O’Connor. I think Senator Markey’s focus on that issue, that effort to polarize, is exactly why he’s so ineffective…. He’s big on tagging people with labels, he’s not focused on helping the people of Massachusetts improve their lives.”

It’s been 74 years since a Democratic Senator from Massachusetts lost their re-election bid. And with anti-Trump sentiment here at high tide, O’Connor faces an uphill climb to say the least.

Jon Keller

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