WASHINGTON (AP) — Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders is picking up the endorsement of former Democratic National Committee chairman Paul Kirk, an ally of the late Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy.
Kirk will announce his endorsement Thursday in Hanover, New Hampshire.
Kirk was appointed to the Senate after Kennedy's death in 2009 and briefly served with Sanders. He backed President Barack Obama in 2008.
Kirk said in prepared remarks that of all the presidential candidates, the Vermont senator has most consistently talked about the dangers facing the nation's democracy.
Polls show Sanders and Hillary Clinton locked in a close race in Iowa and New Hampshire.
Clinton has a large lead over Sanders among DNC "superdelegates" who can support the candidate of their choice at the party's convention. But Kirk's endorsement adds to Sanders' list.