U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton at WBUR. Photo by Robin Lubbock for WBUR

U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton at WBUR. Photo by Robin Lubbock for WBUR

Among the challenges facing Massachusetts U.S. Rep. Seth Moulton, who announced this week he’s joining the crowded field of Democratic candidates for president, is the fact that he’s not well-known.

It’s a fact the North Shore politician is well aware of.

Speaking at the Politics & Eggs breakfast Wednesday in Bedford, New Hampshire, Moulton began with a story about touring a company recently in his own district. He said he met with employees and invited them to ask him questions.

Nobody did.

“I said, you know, part of my job is take tough questions,” Moulton told the gathered business and political leaders. “You can ask even really difficult questions. And there was still silence. And then finally, someone in the way back of the room raised her hand, and she said, ‘Who are you?’ “

The Bedford crowd laughed.

Self-deprecation can be funny. But the joke illustrates the serious challenge facing Moulton: How does a two-term congressman with a thin legislative record stand out in a field of 19 candidates — one that will grow to 20 Thursday when former Vice President Joe Biden jumps in?

Moulton says he’ll do it by focusing on a set of issues that the other candidates aren’t talking much about.

“I am going to talk about how we lead with moral authority around the globe,” he said. “I’m going to confront President Trump on these issues of safety and security, on leadership around the globe, where I think he’s weakest.”

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