Congressman Calls On RFK Jr’s Running-Mate To Leave Race Over Trump

Authored by Zachary Steiber via The Epoch Times,

Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) is calling on Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s running mate to step aside, telling her that he’s worried the independent candidate could lead to former President Donald Trump beating President Joe Biden in November’s presidential election race.

“While I completely respect third parties and the right for anyone to run for public office, I am deeply concerned that Robert F. Kennedy’s name on the ballot in swing states could tilt the election in Donald Trump’s favor,” Mr. Khanna wrote in a letter to Nichole Shanahan, Mr. Kennedy’s running mate.

Mr. Khanna pointed to recent polling that found President Trump was favored by more respondents if Mr. Kennedy and other outside candidates were included in the race. That includes a poll from Marquette Law School, which found that registered voters were evenly divided between President Biden and President Trump, but that, if the other candidates were included, President Trump had a 41 percent to 38 percent edge, with Mr. Kennedy coming in third with 14 percent.

Ms. Shanahan, a lawyer, said that she recently spoke to Mr. Khanna. He had congratulated her on being named Mr. Kennedy’s running mate and encouraged her to run, she said.

“Clearly, Ro has changed his stance based on pressure from the party. I hope he understands how anti-democratic it is to ask someone to step down from a race that empowers the American public to make their own decisions,” Ms. Shanahan wrote on the social media platform X.

“I am very disappointed that he has been pressured into issuing this letter to me publicly. He could have called me privately. He has my direct line.”

Mr. Khanna responded to the criticism, writing:

“No one is saying Nicole doesn’t have the right to run, but it is democratic to try to persuade her that she should support Biden instead given [the] stakes.”

Mr. Kennedy said in a statement that he was grateful for Ms. Shanahan.

“I have always admired Ro Khanna. His flip flop here is disappointing. The party has [the] power to bludgeon men of character into waivering [sic],” he said.

Ms. Shanahan was announced as Mr. Kennedy’s running mate in March.

She has donated millions to Mr. Kennedy’s campaign, according to financial filings, and has also donated in the past to Mr. Khanna and President Biden.

Mr. Kennedy originally launched his presidential bid as a Democrat but became an independent after his campaign was stifled within the Democratic Party, which has largely backed President Biden’s re-election effort.

Ms. Shanahan said in March she was a “disillusioned Democrat” and was leaving the party.

“I do believe they’ve lost their way in their leadership,” she said at the time.

I worry for the party’s overwhelming interest in elitism … and winning at all costs. And I worry that they do it even if that means turning a blind eye on the issues that they all know to be true.”

2024 presidential contender Robert F. Kennedy Jr. speaks with his vice presidential pick Nicole Shanahan in Oakland, Calif., on March 26, 2024. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)

She also said the Republican Party is letting people down. Ms. Shanahan said she’s spoken to members of Congress from both parties about issues like sustainable farming but “all I’ve gotten are vague promises that never amount to real change.”

Ms. Shanahan, the ex-wife of one of Google’s founders, has spent millions on various causes, including research into farming and autism.

Ms. Shanahan’s views mean she should be focused on supporting President Biden, not helping Mr. Kennedy, Mr. Khanna argued.

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