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DNC Loses Its First Attempt to Kick RFK Jr Off the Ballot

Kennedy
Created: 22 April, 2024
Updated: 23 April, 2024
3 min read

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore / Flickr

 

Independent presidential candidate Robert F Kennedy Jr will officially appear on the Hawaii ballot after a ruling Friday blocked an effort by the Democratic Party to disqualify him from ballot access. It marks the first loss for the DNC in its legal strategy to limit voters' choices on the 2024 presidential ballot.

Specifically, the case centered around the qualified status of the We The People political party, which was created to make RFK Jr's path to the ballot a little easier. Hawaii is 1 of 5 states Kennedy supporters formed a "We The People Party" to get him on the ballot.

In Texas, supporters created the "Texas Independent Party."

The Hawaii Office of Elections determined that the objection filed by Hawaii Democrats against We The People failed to "meet its burden of proof in this case." Therefore, RFK Jr's party -- and by extension his presidential ticket -- can appear on Hawaii's ballot in November.

“The Hawaii Office of Elections delivered a very fair and thoughtful decision today in favor of our grassroots, We The People Hawaii,” said We The People State Central Committee Chair Kim Haine. “I’m so proud of how our officers and volunteers represented Hawaii in this real-life David vs. Goliath legal challenge.”

This is RFK Jr's first legal victory over the DNC and third legal victory overall.

He defeated two signature deadlines his legal team argued were unconstitutional in Utah, where Lt. Governor Deidre Henderson agreed to move the deadline from January 8 to March 5, and in Idaho, where state lawmakers were forced to move the deadline to August. 

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RFK Jr is officially on the November ballot in Hawaii, Utah, and Michigan. His campaign says it has also collected the signatures needed to gain ballot access in Idaho, Iowa, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, and North Carolina.

The DNC claims its 2024 campaign is all about protecting democracy, but its actions show that it is democracy on the party's terms. It denied primary challengers to Biden a place on the ballot, it decided what primary votes did and did not matter, and it refused to hold debates.

It is doing everything within its power to minimize the presence or kick independent and third-party candidates off the general election ballot -- with RFK Jr being the biggest target since he has both name ID and money.

The party is concerned its candidate will fail to garner enough votes to overcome the presence of RFK Jr and other candidates outside the two major parties and asserts Kennedy will siphon votes away from Biden and hand the election to Donald Trump.

Former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said on the Jimmy Fallon show that people unhappy with Biden and Trump should "get over yourself." She and other major party figures are pushing a message harder than ever that there are only two parties entitled to people's votes.

They don't seek to earn these votes. They demand them. 

The questions voters need to consider are: Who is really to blame when a candidate fails to convince voters they are the right choice? Who is to blame when a candidate does not earn the votes of US citizens who are looking at other options?

It shows a lack of accountability in the two-party system that the major parties will blame independent candidates, voters, election administrators, and/or anyone and anything but themselves when they lose. No wonder voters want more options.

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The hearings officer in Hawaii, Aaron Schulaner, wrote that the Democratic Party can appeal the Office of Elections' decision "to a court of competent jurisdiction." The party has 30 days to file an appeal. Whether or not this happens remains to be seen. 

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