RFK Jr. Still Struggling for a Spot at the Presidential Debate

m LOS ANGELES - NOV 19: Robert F. Kennedy Jr., Cheryl Hines Kennedy at the "Wild" Premiere at the The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences on November 19, 2014 in Beverly Hills, CA

Third-party candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is dying to land a spot in the upcoming Presidential debates preceding the 2024 Presidential Election. However, Kennedy faces many obstacles in achieving this feat, as the third-party candidate is up against corporations such as CNN and the Federal Election Commission which enforce strict polling requirements for the candidate to make the stage. Although Kennedy’s chances are slim, political observers believe the independent candidate can still achieve his goal. 

RFK Jr. is the only independent candidate during this year’s election season, coming in the polls at 7.5%, which is miles behind Trump and Biden, who are at 41% and 39% in the polls. RFK is using every tool at his disposal to land a spot in the first debate this year, which will take place on June 27th. RFK has recently filed a complaint against the FEC against both Biden and Trump’s campaigns which claims Kennedy is not being treated as fairly as the other two opposing candidates. Kennedy’s complaint also alleges the stated debate requirements are a breach of modern election rules. Kennedy backed his claims stating that Biden and Trump have also not met the requirements. 

On top of that, Kennedy still faces the challenge of poll requirements by CNN, who will be hosting the debate, which Kennedy falls leagues behind his other two opponents.  CNN has set a strict requirement of candidates getting 15% of poll support in four national polls to attend the debate, while Kennedy only has half of that number. 

Joel Payne, a Democratic strategist, stated that it is uncertain if RFK will make the June debate, but it would be a historic milestone in today’s age if the independent candidate did. 

Aside from filing a complaint, RFK has been petitioning across the nation since October to count as a candidate in the election. RFK has been visiting key states such as New York, Nevada, and Michigan.