(Molly Bruns, Headline USA) Recent polls revealed that many Democrat voters would vote for Robert Kennedy Jr. if he ran as an independent in the 2024 presidential election, pushing Democrats into a panicked frenzy.
It comes on the heels of a shock poll released over the weekend by ABC News that suggested former President Donald Trump may have a 9 point advantage over current President Joe Biden among voters in a head-to-head matchup.
However, many of those surveyed in the Rasmussen poll said they had a favorable view of Kennedy and indicated they would be willing to vote for him should he run against both Biden and Trump.
If Kennedy ran as an independent, 33% of of Democrat voters said it was likely they would vote for him; 14% said it was very likely.
“The fact that President Biden is so unpopular that fully a third of Democrats would vote for an independent candidate in the general election underscores the importance of running a fair and competitive primary election,” said a spokesperson for Kennedy’s campaign.
“If the DNC fails to do that, it will likely be saddled with a weak candidate who lacks the popular appeal to defeat the Republicans—whether or not there is a strong third party candidate in the race,” the spokesperson added.
Meanwhile, as Biden’s approval ratings continue to decline, failed 2016 presidential candidate Hillary Clinton warned him recently of the potential threats from third-party candidates, the Daily Mail reported.
In addition to Kennedy, he faces potential challenges from prominent Ivy League intellectual Cornel West, who is seeking the Green Party nomination; as well as the nascent No Labels party, which is likely to run a centrist candidate, with Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., being the most discussed name.
When pollsters included third-party candidates, such as Kennedy, in the polls, Trump trounced Biden, 39% to 36%.
A libertarian candidate would siphon 5% of the vote; an independent would take 5%; and a Green Party candidate would take 4%.
Currently, 62% of possible Democrat voters want someone other than Biden to run, and 59% want Biden to face challengers in a primary leading up to the election.
Marianne Williamson and Kennedy appear to be Biden’s only viable challengers for the Democratic nomination, although the outsize influence of so-called super-delegates in the Democratic National Committee’s nominating process means anything could happen right down to its convention in late August of 2024.
If Biden—who will turn 81 on Nov. 20—were to be a late scratch, resulting in a brokered convention, it would require a replacement candidate to have immediate name-recognition and a massive war-chest already built up.
Considerable speculation in 2020 surrounded the possibility of a Michelle Obama candidacy, although she was quick to dismiss the talk at the time.