Chaotic moment RFK Jr. accepts bid for Libertarian presidential nomination – hours before being eliminated from contention

Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on Sunday became a candidate for the Libertarian Party’s presidential nomination, a shocking move that could give him enough votes to defeat Donald Trump or Joe Biden in November.

Kennedy, who spoke at the convention Friday, was nominated by a delegate on the convention floor on Sunday to be the party’s White House standard barrier. Kennedy’s candidacy was met with boos from other delegates. 

His candidacy was short-lived, however. He was eliminated from contention several hours later, after the first round of voting, having receiving support from 19 delegates, just 2.07% of the vote. 

There was initially some confusion over whether or not Kennedy, who is running an independent bid, would accept the nomination and if he had filed the necessary paperwork.

Originally Kennedy had said he would remain an independent candidate and not be the Libertarian contender. 

Finally, party chair Angela McArdle, standing at the podium, called Kennedy to ask him. 

She stepped away from the microphone to speak with him but could be heard saying to him: ‘I’m at the podium and need to ask you if you accept the nomination.’

She then came back the microphone to inform the delegates: ‘He’s going to get back to us.’

Kennedy ultimately accepted the nomination. McArdle also confirmed his paperwork is in order and he qualifies to be a candidate. 

He called into the convention, face timing to accept the nomination. His call was broadcast on the big screen to the convention center. 

Robert F Kennedy accepted the nomination to be the Libertarian Party’s presidential candidate

Libertarians spent the weekend picking their White House nominee.

Trump was also nominated from the floor on Sunday. However, the former president can’t the top contender because a person can’t be the nominee of two parties in all but five states. 

Trump noted this was the reason he didn’t file the paperwork for the Libertarian nomination. 

‘The reason I didn’t file paperwork for the Libertarian Nomination, which I would have absolutely gotten if I wanted it (as everyone could tell by the enthusiasm of the Crowd last night!), was the fact that, as the Republican Nominee, I am not allowed to have the Nomination of another Party,’ he wrote on Truth Social.

‘Regardless, I believe I will get a Majority of the Libertarian Votes. Junior’ Kennedy is a Radical Left Democrat, who’s destroyed everything he’s touched, especially in New York and New England, and in particular, as it relates to the Cost and Practicality of Energy. He’s not a Libertarian. Only a FOOL would vote for him!’

Kennedy’s quick defeat in the convention hall is also a setback for his independent presidential bid. 

There was a large roster of candidates. Additionally, Stormy Daniels got one write-in vote as did Sean Lennon and Denali The Cat. 

If Kennedy had won the nomination, it would have been a boost to his effort to get on the ballot in all 50 states – and a threat to both Biden and Trump’s efforts to win a second term in the White House. 

The Libertarian Party has election ballot access in at least 37 states, including key battlegrounds such as Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Arizona.

As an independent candidate, Kennedy must get on each state’s ballot separately and each state has its own procedures on how to do that.

But if he were the Libertarian nominee, he would get on the ballot in enough states to theoretically net the 270 Electoral College votes needed to qualify for the presidential debate state – and even win the presidency. 

If Kennedy were the nominee and won in all 37 states, he would garner 380 electoral votes. 

The Libertarian Party’s 37 states is more than double the 15 states where the Kennedy campaign currently says it is taking the steps to get on the ballot.

In other scenarios, Kennedy could win enough votes in a swing state to influence whether Biden or Trump wins the battleground – which in turn could affect the winner of the general presidential election.

That threat of Kennedy’s candidacy is giving both Biden and Trump’s teams nightmares. Each candidate’s campaign has attacked Kennedy. 

Opinion polls suggest that he could siphon votes from both men, with a May Reuters/Ipsos survey showing he was supported by 13% of respondents. 

Kennedy accepted the nomination in a short video statement in which he thanked party members for the ‘unexpected honor.’ He said he hopes Libertarians will join ‘an alliance’ of third-party and independent voters to help defeat Biden and Trump.

‘I’m very grateful to the Libertarian Party for this great honor, and I look forward to an alliance across the country, a fusion alliance of all of these independent parties who are now challenging the Republican-Democrat corrupt duopoly,’ Kennedy said.

Kennedy and Trump also each addressed the convention in person – Kennedy on Friday and Trump on Saturday.  Convention organizers also invited President Biden to speak, but he declined.

Both Kennedy and Trump faced a hostile reception from the Libertarian crowd – getting cat called with boos and jeers – when each gave their remarks.

Kennedy, however, won some cheers by promising to pardon government whistleblower Edward Snowden, currently exiled in Russia, and drop espionage charges against Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks founder battling US attempts to extradite him from Britain. 

He also slammed both Trump and Biden for their response to the covid pandemic.

‘Maybe a brain worm ate that part of my memory, but I don´t recall any part of the United States Constitution where there´s an exemption for pandemics,’ Kennedy said, referencing a New York Times report that he was diagnosed more than a decade ago with a parasite that lodged in his brain.

‘Neither of them upheld the Constitution when it really counted,’ he said of Biden and Trump.

Former President Donald battled through boos, heckling and outbursts Saturday night as he tried to ask Libertarian voters for their support

Former President Donald battled through boos, heckling and outbursts Saturday night as he tried to ask Libertarian voters for their support

However, many in the crowd are worried Kennedy, who originally ran for the Democratic nomination before switching to be an independent candidate, wasn’t a true libertarian.

But Kennedy has emphasized what he has in common with Libertarians, who hold strong beliefs about individual and civil liberties and free choice. They believe in even smaller government than Republicans, but are less focused on lower taxes than the GOP. 

‘My approach is a free-market approach, which appeals to Libertarians,’ Kennedy told CNN last week. 

‘I’m against war, which I think is another important issue for Libertarians. I support constitutional rights. President Trump dismantled our constitutional rights during Covid. So I think Libertarians are probably more inclined to support me if they follow their philosophies.’ 

Trump, in his remarks on Saturday, got feisty with the crowd.  

‘You can either nominate us and give us the position, or give us your votes,’ Trump said to boos as he departed the stage.

Trump repeatedly snapped back at the crowd and their hostility, telling them at one point to ‘keep getting your 3% [of the national vote] every four years,’ adding ‘maybe you don’t want to win.’