Kayyem Hopes To Beat Odds In Mass. Governor's Race

March 29, 2014 2:00 PM
Kayyem Hopes To Beat Odds In Mass. Governor's Race
" BOSTON (AP) — When Juliette Kayyem graduated from Harvard Law School in 1995, she landed a dream job working as a civil rights attorney in President Bill Clinton’s administration.

Her boss was a young attorney and fellow Massachusetts resident serving as Clinton’s assistant attorney general for civil rights — Deval Patrick.

Years later, Kayyem would again find herself working for Patrick. By then, the fellow Democrat had been elected governor of Massachusetts, and he tapped Kayyem to serve as his Homeland Security adviser.

As she runs to succeed Patrick in the governor’s office, Kayyem is trying to carve out her own political niche, pointing to twin legacies as a lawyer championing civil rights causes and as a public security official. Kayyem also served as assistant secretary for intergovernmental affairs at the Department of Homeland Security under President Barack Obama.

Kayyem, 44, isn’t shy about pushing back against forces in her own party that she sees as trying to narrow the field of contenders prematurely — including EMILY’s List, a fundraising group that helps elect Democratic women who support abortion rights. The group has endorsed fellow gubernatorial hopeful, Attorney General Martha Coakley "

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