Lost in the news of the New Hampshire primary, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. made an announcement that has Democrats getting more and more nervous. On Tuesday, the Democratic scion said he qualified as an independent candidate to be on the ballot in New Hampshire in this November’s election, the general election.
He had already gotten on Utah’s ballot, and now Democrats are beginning to notice.
The Hill writes:
Freeing himself from the Democratic Party to run as an independent, Kennedy was ineligible to appear as a candidate in New Hampshire’s primary Tuesday, when voters sent President Biden and former President Trump to resounding victories in their party contests.
But after months of speculation about the credibility of his campaign, Kennedy found success in a small battleground state nonetheless, giving Democrats pause that he could muddy their path to the White House.
“Whatever point Robert Kennedy Jr. wants to make, the time for making it is over,” said Michael Starr Hopkins, a Democratic operative and political commentator. “All this bullshit about No Labels and third-party runs; RFK Jr.’s vanity project is an embarrassment to his family’s legacy and a danger to voters.”
The spoiler theory — that there’s another potentially lethal force lurking, in the form of Kennedy — has been minimized in the discourse, at least publicly, as Biden looks to project confidence as voting commences.
It’s not surprising that RFK Jr. is getting attention. He has a famous name and the American people are not particularly enthusiastic about a rematch between the two oldest candidates to ever run for president.
Last month, Monmouth University found that “only 1 in 4 voters express at least some enthusiasm about a rematch between Joe Biden and Donald Trump next year and 1 in 5 may cast a vote for independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. in 2024.”
While Democrats told themselves for months that RFK Jr. in the race would hurt Trump, recent polling shows that with him on the ballot, the former president would likely beat Old Joe.
According to The Hill, The latest Harvard CAPS-Harris Poll showed Trump leading Biden by 7 points in a one-on-one match-up 48 percent to 41 percent, respectively.
Trump’s lead rose slightly to 8 points with Kennedy added into the mix. In that hypothetical three-way race, Trump scored 41 percent to Biden’s 33 percent, while Kennedy raked in 18 percent.
With independent candidate Cornel West and the Green Party’s Jill Stein also added to the ticket alongside Kennedy, Trump’s lead over Biden climbed to 11 points, with 42 percent to the incumbent’s 31 percent.”
Biden has made his campaign about “defending democracy,” but his campaign’s actions have proven just the opposite. Last August, Biden supporters began moving to prevent third-party candidates from getting ballot access, demanding that voters only choose between Biden and Trump this November.