The Media Blackout for Robert F. Kennedy Jr

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., the son of political firebrand Bobby Kennedy, announced Tuesday that he would seek the White House.

Robert F. Kennedy Jr., the son of political firebrand Bobby Kennedy, announced Tuesday that he would seek the White House. If you’re not plugged in online or receive the bulk of your news from mainstream sources, you might have missed this. The launch of his campaign received little coverage, despite early polling suggesting a substantial 14% base of support among Biden voters.

Many outlets ignored the announcement altogether, and what coverage the campaign did receive was tainted with media bias visible from the headline. Sources like Associated Press and ABC News editorialized from the outset, branding Kennedy a “conspiracy theorist,” “long-shot candidate,” and “anti-vaxxer” in headlines. Some outlets published outright hit pieces. Politico ran a story dubbing Kennedy the family’s “black sheep,” and painting a picture of the crowd as full of “conspiracy theorists, vaccine skeptics and Republicans.” On the other hand, the conservative National Review warnedthat “dismissing Robert F. Kennedy Jr. might be a mistake.”

In a two-hour campaign speech, Kennedy laid out a vision of America opposed to health lockdowns, a bloated and adventurous military, government overreach, and reversing “American economic decline.” He offered ideas on ending the war in Ukraine, environmentalism, and improving health outcomes. The candidate joined Tucker Carslson after the announcement, saying “We’re paying for a war that we can’t afford. The way we do this is by printing money…which is a tax on the poor,” Kennedy said about the war in Ukraine. “We need to get away from this corporate control of our government,” he added.