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BOLD TYPES - EMK Institute looks to leverage old Kennedy Compound

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BOLD TYPES - EMK Institute looks to leverage old Kennedy Compound

June 19, 2023

Bipartisanship at the Kennedy Compound

When Adam Hinds left the state Senate to become CEO of the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate last year, one early goal was to turn the Kennedy compound in Hyannis Port into a “Camp David” of sorts for Congress. It’s a high-profile asset for the institute — Vicki Kennedy donated the house more than a decade ago — but only rented out for occasional events.

Now, that vision is starting to come to fruition. Ten former US senators, five from each party, gathered at the house over the first weekend of June to discuss how partisanship affects the Senate. The event, co-sponsored with the McCain Institute, was the first of what’s being billed a series of “Hyannis Port Summits.”

“They were focused on how today’s political division is negatively impacting the Senate and its ability to find solutions,” Hinds said. “They all agreed [that the event] taking place in a historically significant location really helped to focus minds at this moment in our history.”

The Hyannis Port confab was also part of a broader effort by the EMK Institute board, led by chair Bruce Percelay, to instill bipartisanship in the broader civil discourse, and in the US Senate in particular. Along those lines, senators Jeanne Shaheen and Joni Ernst came to the EMK Institute in Dorchester to debate last week as part of the “Senate Project” series.

“We clearly demonstrated the power of the compound as a meeting place, where President Kennedy decided to put a man on the moon and where the president also debated solutions to the Cuban Missile Crisis,” Percelay said. ‘We view it as a venue where we too can create history.”

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