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Biden’s Democratic primary challenge is over after Robert F. Kennedy Jr. declares his independent candidacy for president.




Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an environmental lawyer and presidential candidate, formally ended his campaign to unseat President Joe Biden in the Democratic primary on Monday and decided to instead run in the far-fetched general election.


Kennedy made a statement in Philadelphia that read, “I’m here to declare myself an independent candidate for president of the United States.”

Kennedy’s announcement ends weeks of rumors regarding his potential candidacy in 2024. Kennedy reportedly met with the leader of the Libertarian Party early this year to discuss their shared ideologies, according to a prior CNN report. And last week, a super PAC backing Kennedy’s presidential campaign made public the findings of a survey they conducted evaluating Kennedy’s chances of winning in a fictitious three-way contest against former President Donald Trump.


Later this month, the campaign will hold a number of rallies in Texas, Florida, and Georgia, a campaign insider told CNN, promising to travel “everywhere” in the run-up to the general election the next year. Prior to November 2024, the campaign is sure that they will be granted entry to the ballot in every state, according to the source.

In the past, it has been difficult for independent and third-party candidates to win over a sizable voting bloc in presidential elections. Ross Perot, a Texas billionaire, launched one of the most successful independent presidential campaigns in recent memory in 1992. Bill Clinton ultimately won the general election, with Perot collecting 8% of the vote.


The general election, which is already anticipated to be fiercely contested, may become much more complicated as a result of Kennedy’s independent candidacy. According to a recent Reuters/Ipsos poll of potential voters, in a fictitious three-way contest between Biden, Trump, and Kennedy, 14% of respondents favored Kennedy, 40% supported Trump, and 38% supported Biden. It’s uncertain whether the Kennedy campaign will be able to convert that level of support into votes in November 2024 with more than a year until the general election.

“Those who claim to hold conservative ideals shouldn’t mislead voters. In a statement criticizing Kennedy over his views on China, guns, the environment, and abortion, Trump campaign spokesman Steven Cheung said: “The fact is that RFK has a frightening record rooted in radical, liberal viewpoints. A leftist Kennedy looking to capitalize on his family’s fame said that an RFK run would be nothing more than a vanity endeavor.


In order to go on the attack and portray Kennedy as a “liberal parading in conservative’s clothing,” one adviser told CNN, pointing to his prior work as an environmental activist, Trump’s associates and advisers have been developing opposition research against Kennedy.

In order to challenge Biden in the Democratic primary, Kennedy first began his campaign in April and frequently traveled to states with early primaries, such as South Carolina and New Hampshire. But his efforts were ineffective; according to a University of New Hampshire poll conducted in September, only 9% of likely Democratic primary voters in New Hampshire supported Kennedy.


simply before Kennedy made his announcement, the Republican National Committee released a statement referring to him as “just another radical, far-left Democrat.”

Kennedy is the nephew of former President John F. Kennedy and the son of former US attorney general Robert F. Kennedy. In a joint statement released on Monday, a few of his siblings referred to his choice to challenge Biden in the general election as “dangerous to our country.”


“Bobby may have the same name as our father, but he lacks the same moral standards, worldview, or sense of justice. The news we received today is quite upsetting for us. In a joint statement, Rory Kennedy, Kerry Kennedy, Joseph P. Kennedy II, and Kathleen Kennedy Townsend denounced his candidacy and said they thought it was dangerous for the nation.

Although Kennedy has never held public office, a tiny group of admirers are drawn to his advocacy against public health requirements and the impact of money on decisions made by the government and private companies. Kennedy formed Children’s Health Defense, a group that frequently disseminates false information about vaccinations, and has advocated anti-vaccination conspiracies at political rallies.


Conservatives, liberals, and independents from across the political spectrum gathered in Philadelphia on Monday for the announcement.

Independent New Jersey teacher Walter Rodriguez said he would back Kennedy if he was on the ballot in his home state. Otherwise, he declared, he won’t be casting a ballot at all.


Rodriguez proclaimed, “I’m excited about the energy they bring to the table as a candidate and I think some of the things that he’s talking about are things that I identify with.” “Not relying so heavily on government intervention in politics or the pharmaceutical industry. Therefore, the fact that he is announcing his independence today is the proper course of action.

Karl Hagstrom traveled from Westchester County, New York, to Philadelphia. He declared that while he backed Trump in 2016 and 2020, he would back Kennedy in 2024. In contrast to Trump, who he claimed has been too divisive, he claimed he is drawn to Kennedy because he believes the political outsider can bring unity to the nation.


“Just the never-ending craziness, the tweeting, the negativity, and the simply out-of-the-blue responses to everything. It’s not sustainable, and it can’t unite people, according to Hagstrom.

Several Boston-area supporters drove with Sarah Shulman to the event. Shulman, a doctor by profession, attended Kennedy’s Democratic campaign launch event in Boston in April and stated that his anti-corruption message and views on vaccinations encouraged her to endorse him. She claimed that even though she supported Biden in the 2020 election and has never given thought to backing a Republican, she has felt alienated from his message ever since he became office.


Kennedy is speaking in our language, according to Shulman. “A Democrat,” someone with a liberal mindset who is kind, considerate, and rational.

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