Robert Kennedy made his Independent run for president official on Monday in front of hundreds of supporters in Philadelphia. Among those absent were his own siblings.
“I’m here to declare myself an independent candidate for president of the United States,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy’s siblings aren’t pleased with Robert’s decision to run as an independent. In fact, his sister, Kerry Kennedy, took to Twitter to denounce her brother’s candidacy:
“The decision of our brother Bobby to run as a third-party candidate against Joe Biden is dangerous to our country. Bobby might share the same name as our father, but he does not share the same values, vision, or judgment. Today’s announcement is deeply saddening for us. We denounce his candidacy and believe it to be perilous for our country,” Kerry Kennedy posted on Twitter this morning.
Though both political parties are keeping a close eye on Kennedy, the Democrats seem more concerned than Republicans about Kennedy pulling votes from their candidate.
However, Kennedy’s anti-vaccine crusade during the height of COVID could pull more votes from Donald Trump, the presumed GOP presidential candidate.
The outcome of the 2024 election, with Joe Biden and former president Donald Trump as leading contenders, may hinge on a small number of voters in key states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, Georgia, and Arizona.
Unaffiliated with any party, independent voters could play a pivotal role in Arizona and elsewhere.
With Kennedy’s substantial financial support and famous name, he has the potential to attract votes from both Biden and Trump supporters, given the lukewarm enthusiasm for the two major candidates.
Concerns about third-party candidates arise because Trump’s support, although stable, falls below 50%. This means voters who might reluctantly choose Biden over Trump in a head-to-head matchup could opt for Kennedy.
Kennedy’s stances on certain issues align more with Trump’s followers, who embrace anti-vaccination and conspiracy theories than with Biden’s more centrist and left-leaning base. Opinion polls from FiveThirtyEight indicate that Kennedy’s appeal leans significantly toward Republicans rather than Democrats.
Republican strategists see both advantages and drawbacks to Kennedy’s entry into the race. While he might draw some votes away from Trump, they believe he will have a more detrimental impact on Biden, as Trump’s supporters tend to be more enthusiastic.