"The demographics of Massachusetts are changing," explains Witkowski, noting that since January, Joe Kennedy's popularity has waned significantly. The latest polls show him losing if the election — 15 months away — were held now. "There's a good percentage of younger Democrats who aren't awed by the mystique of the Kennedy name. A drop like this is the sign of a major shift underway."
BOSTON: Joe Kennedy says he quit the gubernatorial race because he was worried the campaign would not focus on "issues" — a reference to the media's penchant for covering such recent family foibles as his brother cavorting with a teenage babysitter, his ex-wife's book attacking his quest for an annulment, and his un-clothed George-publishing cousin's recent attack on Joe's morality. But TIME Boston reporter Tom Witkowski says the decision has more to do with the Kennedys losing their luster in the eyes of the voters than with a scandal-mongering press.