Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, who this summer sued the federal government over the unconstitutionality of the Defense of Marriage Act, just put herself first in line to take Sen. Ted Kennedy’s vacant U.S. Senate seat. Sounds like Kennedy’s gay-friendly legacy could continue?

This morning Coakley picked up nomination papers, which she must file with 10,000 voter signatures to qualify for the Dec. 8 Democratic primary. But it’s no surprise: She’s been “quietly” putting together a Senate run for at least the past year.

As should be expected, Coakley is already embroiled in a mini scandal, standing accused of using finances from her attorney general campaign to put out feelers for a federal campaign.

Undoubtedly, Coakley and her supporters will point to her DOMA lawsuit (Gill v. Office of Personnel Management) as just one of many commitments to the gay community and, more largely, her plan on continuing the well-liked Kennedy’s civil rights agenda.

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