Legacy media outlets are sounding the alarm over long-shot Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s “right-wing ideas.”
Kennedy, the nephew of the late President John F. Kennedy, announced his 2024 presidential campaign in April.
Since then, he has polled surprisingly strongly and currently has double-digit support, alarming Democrats who expect President Biden to easily clinch the party’s nomination for a second term.
On Monday, Kennedy joined Twitter chief Elon Musk in a Twitter Space audio discussion about his presidential bid.
The discussion, dubbed “Reclaiming Democracy,” lasted more than two hours and featured other participants, including former Democratic congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard, who left the Democratic Party last year, and David Sacks, a top donor to Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, who is running for the Republican 2024 nomination.
“On Monday, he sounded like a candidate far more at ease in the mushrooming Republican presidential contest,” The New York Times wrote Monday in a piece warning that Kennedy “pushes right-wing ideas and misinformation.”
Kennedy on Monday “dived into the full embrace of a host of conservative figures,” the Times said.
Kennedy has been a vaccine skeptic since long before the pandemic, and he voiced concerns about the COVID vaccine starting in 2020. Kennedy apologized in early 2022 for referencing Adolf Hitler and Holocaust victim Anne Frank at an anti-vaccine rally. He also made headlines last year when he accused Dr. Anthony Fauci of orchestrating “fascism.”
“Have Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and His Anti-vax Conspiracies Found a Home?” Vanity Fair asked Monday.
CNN reported Monday that “as a marginal candidate who espouses debunked medical claims, Kennedy and his appearance with Musk could further cement the perception that Twitter actively mainstreams extremism.”
Kennedy also plans to travel to the southern border this week to “try to formulate policies that will seal the border permanently.”
POLITICO scratched its head trying to figure out why Kennedy is polling in the double digits. The Kennedy name “still means something” in Democratic politics, the outlet said. Also, some voters have “qualms” about a second Biden term, and “eyes can wander early on” in a Democratic primary.
Nevertheless, Kennedy is an “annoyance” for Biden and “potentially dangerous.”
“Besides using his legendary name and a national campaign megaphone to espouse fringe views, his outsize polling performance has served as a routine reminder of Biden’s vulnerabilities among his base,” POLITICO said.
Kennedy “tests the conspiratorial appetite of Democrats,” the Washington Post declared Monday.
Kennedy praised Musk, calling his arrival at Twitter “a breath of fresh air for our country.”
“There’s never been a time in history when we look back and say that the people who are censoring free speech were the good guys. They’re always the bad guys. It’s always the first step toward totalitarianism,” Kennedy said.
Kennedy received a surprise endorsement Sunday from former Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, who tweeted that Kennedy “can and will” defeat former President Donald Trump and DeSantis in 2024.
Also on Sunday, Instagram lifted the suspension on Kennedy’s account. Kennedy was banned from Instagram back in 2021 “for repeatedly sharing debunked claims about the coronavirus or vaccines,” Facebook, which owns Instagram, said at the time.