Is Robert Kennedy Jr. running for President? Anti-vaccine activist RFK Jr. is challenging Biden in the 2024 presidential election
NEW YORK — Democrat Robert F. Kennedy Jr., an anti-vaccine activist and scion of one of the country’s most famous political families, is running for president.
Kennedy submitted a candidacy to the Federal Election Commission on Wednesday.
The 69-year-old’s campaign to challenge incumbent President Joe Biden for the Democratic nomination has come a long way. Self-help author Marianne Williamson is also running for the Democrats.
Kennedy, a nephew of President John F. Kennedy and son of his assassinated brother Robert F. Kennedy, was once a best-selling author and environmental advocate specializing in issues such as clean water.
But more than 15 years ago he became fixated on the belief that vaccines are not safe. He went on to become one of the leading voices in the anti-vaccination movement, and his work has been described as misleading and dangerous by public health experts and even members of his own family.
Kennedy has long been involved in the anti-vaccine movement, but efforts have intensified following the COVID-19 pandemic and the development of the COVID-19 vaccine.
His anti-vaccine charity, Children’s Health Defense, has thrived during the pandemic, with revenue more than doubling to $6.8 million in 2020, according to filings filed with charity regulators.
His organization has directed false claims against groups who may be more inclined to distrust the vaccine, including mothers and black Americans, experts say, which could have resulted in deaths during the pandemic.
Kennedy published a book, The Real Anthony Fauci, in 2021, in which he accused the US’s leading infectious disease physician of being part of “a historic coup against Western democracy” and promoted unproven COVID-19 treatments such as ivermectin, those used to treat parasites and the antimalarial drug hydroxychloroquine.
His push against the COVID-19 vaccine has at times linked him to anti-democracy figures and groups. Kennedy has appeared at events where he spread the lie that the 2020 presidential election was stolen and with people cheering or downplaying the Jan. 6, 2021 riot in the US Capitol.
A photo posted to Instagram showed Kennedy backstage at a Reawaken America event in July 2021 with former President Donald Trump’s ally Roger Stone, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and anti-vaccination activist Charlene Bollinger. All three have spread the lie that the 2020 election was stolen.
Bollinger has performed with Kennedy at several events. She and her husband sponsored an anti-vaccine, pro-Trump rally Jan. 6 near the Capitol. Bollinger celebrated the attack and her husband attempted to enter the Capitol. Kennedy later appeared in a video for her Super PAC.
Kennedy has repeatedly invoked Nazis and the Holocaust when discussing measures aimed at curbing the spread of COVID-19, such as mask requirements and vaccination requirements. He has sometimes apologized for these comments, including when he implied that people in 2022 would be worse off than Anne Frank, the teenager who died in a Nazi concentration camp after living in a Nazi concentration camp with her family for two years Secret annex in an Amsterdam house.
Kennedy has at times invoked his family legacy in his anti-vaccine work, including sometimes using images of President Kennedy.
His sister Kerry Kennedy, who directs Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, the international human rights group founded by her mother Ethel, said her brother occasionally removed some content at her request.
She told the Associated Press in a 2021 interview that her brother was “completely wrong and very dangerous on this issue.”
https://abc7.com/robert-f-kennedy-jr-is-running-for-president-2024-election/13092282/ Is Robert Kennedy Jr. running for President? Anti-vaccine activist RFK Jr. is challenging Biden in the 2024 presidential election