ALAN KHAZEI, FOUNDER/CEO OF BE THE CHANGE INC. (D)
DECLARED? No, but pulled papers
Khazei's candidacy is no joke — he is the co-founder of the nonprofit AmeriCorps organization City Year, in addition to Be the Change, which he founded in 2007. A graduate of Harvard and Harvard Law, the 48 year old is a major activist/philanthropist with a vast network of supporters. In 2004, he was rumored to be seriously interested in running for Senate if John Kerry had become president, and the swiftness with which he has pulled together this unofficial effort suggests that he's been thinking about it for some time.
Khazei is likely to raise money quickly enough to grab the media's attention as a serious player — sources say he may pull in $2 million in his first few weeks. He will undoubtedly command an army of energetic, well-organized grassroots volunteers.
He also has a close connection to Kennedy. Most notably, he tirelessly championed passage of Kennedy's Serve America Act, which became law earlier this year.
Of course, he has never been a political candidate, and not everyone is good at it their first time out. With a compacted special-election schedule, he will have no time to master the craft.
HE'S NO TED KENNEDY, BUT . . . he may come closest to inspiring progressives the way Kennedy did.
HOW HE WINS The voters are looking for someone different than the usual pol.
HOW HE LOSES He comes across better in theory than in practice.
: Talking Politics
, World Politics, Tom Reilly, Nancy Pelosi, More