RFK: the Three-Lettered, Third-Party Candidate You Need To Know About

    Ringo Chiu / shutterstock.com
    Ringo Chiu / shutterstock.com

    Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is yet another member of the infamous Democratic family from New England. Nephew to President John F. Kennedy and son to Robert F Kennedy Senior, his father served as attorney general, a US Senator, and also for President. With both brothers assassinated the Kennedy family has had little luck in staying alive while in politics, except Ted.

    RFK Jr. is classified by many as conservative but has a soft spot for activism, both against vaccines and for the environment, with a focus on clean water. This defiance has put him at odds with his family, especially after he founded Waterkeeper Alliance to source clean water for poor families, and Children’s Health Defense in opposition to vaccines on kids. During COVID, the second organization gained significant traction in helping families keep kids safe from rushed injections.

    Still needing thousands of signatures to get on the ballots, he and his team have been visiting cities and states often overlooked by Republicans and Democrats. Hawaii, West Virginia, and Wyoming have all rolled out the red carpet with supporters arriving hours before doors open. A rare reliance on YouTube videos has gotten his campaign message in front of voting-aged people with the least amount of campaign funds.

    His message is a strong one. Speaking before a packed house in Las Vegas, NV, back in February, he said, “I can fix this country. All these agencies that intimidate normal politicians, I’ve sued every one of them. … When you sue these agencies, you get a Ph.D. in corporate capture and how to unravel it.” As the crowd erupted in applause, it signified that he had done it. He had found a mixture of hot-button topics that was middle ground and spoke more to the average voter than either one side has.

    As it stands, we haven’t had a third-party president since Abraham Lincoln, who took the White House as the first Republican Party candidate. Since then, only Ross Perot has gotten more than single digits in the popular vote, with 19% back in 1992. He then fell off to 8% in 1996. Getting no electoral votes, now RFK Jr. has his back against the wall, but in this unusual rematch between Biden and Trump, he might just have the recipe to make a big impact.