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Robert Kennedy Jr. Backs Reparations, and It Only Hurts Joe Biden

The anybody but Trump argument fails when somebody else is out there.

Third-party presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. may have ended his chances with right-leaning independent voters by wholeheartedly embracing the woke politics of racial grievance. In doing so, however, he strengthens an already widespread belief that his campaign is going to peel far more votes away from Democrat Joe Biden than Republican Donald Trump.

In a late April podcast now gaining national attention, Kennedy told National Black Farmers Association founder John Boyd Jr. that he will deliver on President Biden’s failed attempt to grant $5 billion reparations debt relief to black farmers. Biden included the highly controversial measure in his March 2021 COVID stimulus plan. A federal judge ruled it unconstitutional three months later.

Kennedy does not agree.

‘Stolen From Them Through Discrimination’

“I can tell you that when I’m in the White House, you’re going to be out there the first week, I’m going to get rid of those people in [the US Department of Agriculture] and get that money,” Kennedy promised Boyd. “That $5 billion is not money, that is an entitlement,” he stressed. “It’s money that was a loan that black farmers were entitled to way back then and was stolen from them through discrimination. You can testify it was personally stolen from you and that’s what the court found.”

It’s the latest move bound to turn off any conservative voters of the civil libertarian type who my have been attracted to Kennedy for his influential anti-vaccine stance during the height of the Coronavirus pandemic. Kennedy has often been accused of coming across as too off-the-cuff and unfocused in hashing out his platform. In early May, he had to climb down from remarks stating he supported late-term abortion right up to the moment of birth. His campaign staffers were more surprised than anyone by the pronouncement. NFL star quarterback Aaron Rodgers also recently confirmed that he was asked to be Kennedy’s running mate, reinforcing the damaging notion that his campaign is more splash than substance.

Defending government handouts based on race will only further fuel suspicions among conservative independents seeking an alternative to the two-party nexus. Above all, this voting block is motivated by a keen desire for genuine and lasting change in the way the US government operates. But Kennedy’s reparations stance will attract progressive anti-establishment independents who already have a laundry list of reasons for disliking Biden, most notably his pro-war foreign policy agenda.

The Kennedy Sword Cuts Only One Way

Boyd, a pro-reparations advocate himself, highlights the problem for Democrats. “Boyd Jr. vowed not to support Biden’s reelection bid due to his lack of attention to the ‘struggling black farmers who are losing their land,’” Fox News observed.

But Boyd was never going to support Trump, either. “This administration has been black people’s worst nightmare,” he told The Roland Martin Unfiltered Daily Digital Show in January 2020, speaking of then-President Trump. “We have to do something to organize and mobilize and get someone that can defeat this president in a general election. I don’t care who it is they got, anybody would be better than this president at this point.”

Anybody. This was the argument for the independent political left to swallow hard and back establishment lifer Biden in 2020. It’s precisely what Biden will be losing with Kennedy around in 2024, and it’s no small thing.

And for those who might be unsure, Kennedy is very much in the picture. He has used a clever strategy of working with established independent parties on the local level to help boost his bid to get on the ballot in states across America. His campaign claims to have already qualified in 15 states. While that number is in dispute at the moment, what is clear is that he is making excellent progress.

“Kennedy and his running mate, Nicole Shanahan, are now on the ballot in four states. They have finished signature gathering in nine more and are circulating petitions for 29 others,” Politico reported May 13. He’s not just squeaking over the bar. Team Kennedy turned in twice the number of signatures required to qualify for the ballot in Texas, a solid red state that Democrats nevertheless have hopes for, especially in a Senate race against incumbent Ted Cruz (R-TX).

“In the last two or three months, I’ve been very impressed with the Kennedy operation for being able to smartly maneuver and get on ballots that were expensive and difficult,” Michael Arno, whose ballot access firm worked with No Labels, told Politico. “It sounds like they’ve done very well in both Texas and New York, and that’s very impressive and a real feather in their cap.”

Trump has very specifically targeted blue New York in 2024. Having Kennedy on the ballot in the Empire State – at a time when radical progressives in the Big Apple are furious with Biden over the Gaza War – is just fine and dandy with Republicans.

Those on the political left desperate to prop up Biden one final time fully understand the threat Kennedy represents. “Third-party candidacies, to my opinion, are an unacceptable answer in the 2024 election,” Wisconsin progressive radio host Mike Crute proclaimed in early April, “Don’t throw away your vote.” Wisconsin is a crucial swing state in this election.

Four years ago, an unpopular Joe Biden profited greatly from a somewhat taunting message to left-leaning independent-minded voters: Where else are you gonna go? In 2024, there will be somewhere else to go.

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