BEVERLY — Seth Moulton has four tours of duty in Iraq, three degrees from Harvard and the enthusiasm of a 34-year-old launching his first political campaign.
What he doesn’t have is name recognition. Yesterday, the Salem resident and Marblehead native began the long process of trying to penetrate the consciousness of voters in the 6th Congressional District.
With the election more than a year away, Moulton kicked off his campaign to beat Congressman John Tierney in the Democratic primary by visiting train stations and coffee shops in Salem, Beverly, Gloucester and Lynn.
One of his stops was the Atomic Cafe in downtown Beverly, where Moulton politely interrupted customers as they sipped their specialty coffees and perused their laptops.
“I’m a Democrat, and I’m running against John Tierney,” he said as he sat down at a window table with Beverly resident Mike Evers.
Moulton, in shirt and tie with his sleeves rolled up, told potential voters he’s running because “I think it’s time for a change.” He filled them in on his resume, which includes serving four tours of duty over five years in Iraq as a Marine infantry officer, as well as earning degrees from the Harvard Business School and the John F. Kennedy School of Government.
When Evers asked him how he would be different from Tierney, the nine-term incumbent from Salem, Moulton said, “I commend John on his service, but Congress today is known more for its two-party bickering. I was in the Marines, and we had people from all over the country. We were able to rise above our differences.”
After chatting with Moulton, Renya Onasik of Marblehead said he appeared “genuine” and “respectful.” Onasik does not know Moulton but had looked at his online campaign video after reading a story about his entrance into the race.