On Monday, Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who is both an environmental lawyer and an anti-vaccine activist, announced that he will withdraw from the Democratic primary race and instead run as an Independent candidate for president. This decision adds an interesting element to the upcoming 2024 election, which is anticipated to feature a highly anticipated rematch between current U.S. President Joe Biden and former president Donald Trump.
On Monday, Kennedy acknowledged that allies from both Biden and Trump have expressed concerns about him potentially detracting from their respective candidates’ chances. He stated that both sides have valid points.
Kennedy Jr., the son of U.S. Senator Robert F. Kennedy, faced restrictions on Instagram for disseminating false information regarding vaccines and the COVID-19 crisis. However, he was eventually granted access again. In an unsuccessful legal attempt, he sought to compel Google, the owner of YouTube, to restore his videos where he expressed doubts about the safety of COVID vaccines.
On Monday, Kerry Kennedy, Rory Kennedy, and Joseph Kennedy II, who are siblings of Kennedy, expressed their disapproval of their brother’s bid for candidacy. In a statement, they stated that although Bobby bears the same name as their father, he does not possess the same values, vision, or judgment.
Former Texas congressman Will Hurd halted his campaign for the Republican nomination shortly after Kennedy’s decision.
Hurd failed to gain traction as a pragmatic moderate who pledged to lead the party away from Trump’s “Make America Great Again” movement. He said on the social media platform X, formerly known as Twitter, that he would endorse Nikki Haley.
These are the remaining candidates aspiring for the 2024 election from both political parties.
The Republican Party
North Dakota’s governor, Doug Burgum, joined the race for the Republican presidential nomination on June 6, making his announcement in the Wall Street Journal. A long-shot candidate known to few outside his home state, Burgum, 66, is a former computer software entrepreneur. In a video previewing his announcement, he portrayed himself as a rural state conservative, experienced in energy policy and far outside of the war of words that’s been going on between Trump and DeSantis.
The former New Jersey governor formally launched his bid for the Republican nomination for president June 6. Christie has cast himself as the only candidate in the field willing to directly take on Trump. It’s Christie’s second try for the nomination, after losing to Trump in 2016 and going on to become a close adviser of his before breaking with the former president over his refusal to accept the results of the 2020 election.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis launched his presidential campaign bid in a highly anticipated live audio chat with Elon Musk on Twitter. But the event was plagued by technical problems, prompting mockery from his rivals and casting doubt about his viability as a candidate with enough support to defeat Trump, his one-time ally. His campaign said he raised $1 million within an hour of his presidential announcement, and $8.2 million in the 24 hours after his campaign launch.
The conservative talk radio host ran unsuccessfully in California’s recall election against Gov. Gavin Newsom. Elder, 71, announced his candidacy on Tucker Carlson’s now-cancelled show on Fox News, and tweeted, “America is in decline, but this decline is not inevitable. We can enter a new American Golden Age, but we must choose a leader who can bring us there.”
A former governor of South Carolina and Trump’s ambassador to the United Nations, Haley, 51, has emphasized her relative youth compared with Biden and Trump, as well as her background as the daughter of two Indian immigrants. She has gained a reputation in the Republican Party as a solid conservative who has pitched herself as a stalwart defender of American interests abroad.
The former Arkansas governor launched his bid for the White House in April with a call for Trump to step aside to deal with his indictment. Hutchinson, 72, has touted his experience leading the deeply conservative state as proof he can deliver on policies Republican voters care about, citing his record with tax cuts and job creation initiatives as particular sources of pride. Still, his name recognition remains limited outside Arkansas.
On June 5, the ex-vice president of the United States announced his candidacy for the 2024 Republican presidential election. This sets the stage for a competition with his previous running mate, Trump. While Pence had been loyal to Trump in the past, he chose not to support him when Trump attempted to overturn the outcome of the 2020 election. Pence is known for his strong social conservative views and has expressed concerns about the increasing populist influence within the party. His advisers view him as the sole candidate who embodies traditional conservative values in the vein of Reagan.
Ramaswamy, a former biotechnology investor and executive, aged 37, established a company in 2022 with the aim of urging companies to disregard environmental, social, and corporate governance endeavors. In February, he declared his candidacy for the Republican nomination. However, as a political outsider, his chances of success are considered unlikely.
The only Black Republican U.S. senator declared his candidacy on May 22. Scott, 57, has low name recognition outside his home state of South Carolina, but his optimism and focus on unifying his divided party have helped him draw a contrast with the more aggressive approach by some of his opponents. Scott supporters, however, acknowledge that while his sunny demeanour is a selling point, it may not be enough to defeat the front-runners.
Trump announced his election campaign last November, even as he faced criticism from within his party over his support of candidates who performed badly in the 2022 midterms. He has been the front-runner ever since, with a firm grip on his base. The 76-year-old former president even increased his standing in polls after he was indicted in connection with an alleged hush-money payment to a porn star. At the same time, he remains unpopular with much of the U.S. electorate.
The Democratic Party
On April 25, U.S. President Joe Biden made the announcement that he would be running for re-election, marking four years since he first declared his candidacy in 2020. Despite being the oldest U.S. president in history at 80 years old, the Democrat reaffirmed his commitment to protect American democracy in a video statement.
On March 23, the highly successful writer and expert in personal development embarked on her second attempt to become President, despite having low chances of success. In the previous presidential primary, she competed as a member of the Democratic Party but withdrew from the race prior to any votes being cast.
Robert Kennedy Jr.
Kennedy, a 69-year-old advocate against vaccines, decided to withdraw from his position as a Democrat and instead run as an Independent candidate on October 9th. He expressed his desire to create a “new Declaration of Independence” by distancing himself from corporations, the media, and the two main political parties.
Kennedy stated that he is here today to announce our liberation from the oppressive control of corruption, which deprives us of affordable livelihoods, our faith in what lies ahead, and our admiration for one another.
In recent times, the individual who has a strong commitment to the environment and is the son of former U.S. senator and attorney general Robert F. Kennedy, has gained attention for his opposition to vaccines. As a result of his decision to run for office, some of his siblings have expressed their disapproval by issuing a statement that condemns his candidacy as a potential danger to our nation.
Dropped out: Will Hurd (R), Francis Suarez (R).