Ignoring Robert F Kennedy Jr is not an option

June 14, 2023
By Naomi Klein

Given the strengths that Kennedy possesses as a candidate, we should expect him to continue to build momentum. Ignoring him is not an option


When Robert F Kennedy Jr announced his plan to run for president in the Democratic party primaries this April, the dominant liberal strategy towards the once tough environmental lawyer – now spreader of all manner of dangerous, unsupported theories – seemed to be: ignore him and wait for him to go away. Don’t cover, don’t engage and don’t debate. Jim Kessler, a leader of the pro-Biden think tank Third Way, called him a “gadfly and a laughingstock”; Democratic consultant Sawyer Hackett brushed him off as “a gnat.”

Well, if recent developments in the Kennedy campaign have demonstrated anything, it’s that denial is not a viable political strategy. Kennedy honed his social media skills over years to spread his anti-vaccine message, so he has simply done an end-run around traditional media and party structures…