The Kennedy political dynasty is the dynasty founded by Patrick J. Kennedy in the United States, known for its liberal politics. Perhaps the best known Kennedy is the late President of the United States John F. Kennedy.
Some commentators in the early 1960s made predictions that President John F. Kennedy would be first of a dynasty in the White House, but these predictions were not borne out, and the idea largely dropped off the public's radar after Robert Kennedy was assassinated in 1968 and Edward Kennedy was involved in a possible drunk-driving incident (in which a passenger in his car was killed) in 1969. However, a number of Kennedy family members have held high office since then.
Actor and California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is associated with the Kennedy family by his marriage to television journalist Maria Shriver, daughter of Eunice Kennedy and Sargent Shriver, although Schwarzenegger is a Republican. Other than Schwarzenegger, a Kennedy by marriage, the most famous Kennedy of the current generation is the late John F. Kennedy, Jr, a lawyer and publisher of George magazine, was killed in a plane crash in 1999. Several of the current generation are involved in national or state politics. Kathleen Kennedy Townsend is a former Lieutenant Governor of Maryland; Patrick J. Kennedy is a Congressman from Rhode Island; Joseph P. Kennedy II is a former Congressman from Massachusetts.
The dynasty was founded by Patrick J. Kennedy (1858 - 1929) who married Mary Augusta Hickey, by way of their son Joseph P. Kennedy, Sr (1888 - 1969) who married Rose Fitzgerald (1890 - 1995) in 1914. Together Rose and Joe Sr. (who served as Ambassador to Great Britain in the years leading up to World War II) had nine children:
- Joseph P. Kennedy, Jr (1915 - 1944)
- John Fitzgerald Kennedy (1917 - 1963)
- JFK was a U.S. Congressman, a U.S. Senator and later President. He was assassinated. He married Jacqueline Lee Bouvier and had three children, two of whom survived to adulthood.
- Rosemary Kennedy (born 1918)
- Kathleen Agnes Kennedy (1920 - 1948)
- Kathleen married twice and was killed in a plane crash in Europe. She was known as "Kick."
- Eunice Mary Kennedy (born 1921)
- Patricia Kennedy (born 1924)
- Robert F. Kennedy (1925 - 1968)
- He was Attorney General of the United States in his brother's administration, later served as Senator from New York, and was assassinated while running for President in 1968. He married Ethel Skakel and had 11 children.
- Jean Ann Kennedy (born 1928)
- Jean married and had four children. She later served as the U.S. Ambassador to Ireland.
- Edward Moore Kennedy (born 1932)