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Here Are the States Where RFK Jr. Says He Has Made the Ballot

Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s campaign says he has qualified for just more than a fifth of the 50 states he’s targeting before November.

Less than six months until Election Day, Kennedy has successfully petitioned to get on the battleground states of Michigan, Ohio, New Hampshire, Nevada and North Carolina and has also amassed enough support for larger targets, like California.

Of the 13 states Kennedy is claiming ballot access, Decision Desk HQ has confirmed three of them: Michigan, Oklahoma and Utah.

While Kennedy has set a goal to compete everywhere — and has predicted he’ll add new states each week — Democrats and Republicans believe the environmental lawyer likely only needs a few consequential places to force a “spoiler” outcome.

Kennedy’s campaign is “working to pull votes away from disenfranchised voters of both President Biden and President Trump,” campaign press secretary Stefanie Spear told The Hill about their ballot access strategy.

Here are the states where Kennedy says he has made the ballot so far:

California

Electoral votes: 54

California isn’t in danger of turning red, but Kennedy’s presence on the ballot could damage Biden on the road to the White House nonetheless. California has more electoral votes up for grabs than any other contest, and Kennedy could appeal to voters who see him as an attractive third option on the ticket. His running mate, Nicole Shanahan, an Oakland native and tech lawyer from Silicon Valley, further gives the Kennedy-Shanahan ticket street credit.

Kennedy qualified for the ballot through the Independent Party, and the secretary of state has until the end of August to certify his name.

Delaware

Electoral votes: 3

Hawaii

Electoral votes: 4

Idaho

Electoral votes: 4

Iowa

Electoral votes: 6

Kennedy is hoping to make his mark in the Hawkeye State, despite the usual emphasis there this cycle. He appeared in West Des Moines last month, gathering supporters through a convention-style event for candidates who are registered as independents. Unique to Iowa, the convention is a way to circumvent the signature collection process that requires different counties to send representatives in support of the candidate. Kennedy’s campaign noted that they had surpassed the 25-country threshold during their event, allowing him to appear as a registered contender.

Michigan

Electoral votes: 15

Michigan is arguably the most important among Kennedy’s current trove of ballots. The “movable middle,” as Spear calls it, can be found all over the state. Based on recent results, a hard-to-ignore faction cast protest votes in the recent Democratic primary. Biden lost out on two delegates over the about 100,000 primary voters who opted for an “uncommitted” choice in February. Michigan’s anxious electorate means Kennedy can potentially make headway with disgruntled Biden voters and others who are fed up with the president’s handling of the Israel-Hamas war but who also don’t want Trump.

Nebraska

Electoral votes: 5

Abortion is expected to be a major issue at the ballot box in Nebraska. The state has a newly passed law on the books that places significant restrictions on abortions, banning them after 12 weeks. Democrats are looking to make abortion a wedge issue not just against Republicans, who often argue for stricter pro-life measures, but also against Kennedy, who they say has sided with the GOP on women’s health issues. Bolstered by national Democrats, pro-choice operatives are likely to draw contrasts between Democrats’ position under Biden and Kennedy’s in states where it will come before voters.

“Within the last year, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. has supported an abortion ban and other restrictions on reproductive health,” said Joel Payne, a Democratic strategist serving as chief communications officer for the group MoveOn. “As recently as last week, his own running mate reaffirmed his anti-abortion views. We won’t let him wiggle out of this one.”

Nevada

Electoral votes: 6

Democrats and Republicans are both working to court Latino voters, noting their significance in key swing states like Nevada. Hispanics in the Silver State are especially non-monolithic and have voted for both major parties — and have sat out elections all together — making their votes more elusive and more coveted. Kennedy’s camp launched a Latino outreach program in April and has added Nevada to their targets. Both Democrats and allies of Kennedy realize that his targeting of Latinos could be detrimental to Biden, who has seen his support among the diverse voting bloc fracture in part over his border policies.

New Hampshire

Electoral votes: 4

The Granite State isn’t the biggest electoral haul in the bunch, but it could be one of Kennedy’s better shots at success. The “Live Free or Die” approach lends itself to Kennedy’s anti-establishment campaign, and the state is known for favoring outsiders, like Bernie Sanders and former President Trump in 2016 Democratic and Republican primaries, against more traditional opponents. New Hampshire was among the first places Kennedy qualified for on the ballot, even before having a running mate.

North Carolina

Electoral votes: 16

North Carolina is considered one of the newer swing states this year. Democrats are hopeful they can flip some districts and that Biden can add it to his 270 map. Trump’s campaign wants to keep it on their side after only narrowly winning in 2020. Like other purple battlegrounds, Kennedy in this race creates more questions for both major party nominees. He’s officially on the ballot through the “We The People” party as a way to get around steep signature requirements for independents.

Ohio

Electoral votes: 17

Kennedy’s campaign is also counting on Ohio as housing a sizable amount of “movable” voters. Spear says that includes independents, who are the biggest voting bloc, as well as “people who have never voted or who have lost interest in the political system and young adults who are looking for a leader who can restore the American dream.”

Ohio has largely gone Republican and polling still favors Trump over Biden, but Kennedy has consistently earned double-digit support there in a three-way race, making him an unpredictable factor in both of his rivals’ calculations. Kennedy’s standing in the fall could make Trump’s path to a victory in Ohio harder than expected.

Oklahoma

Electoral votes: 7

Utah

Electoral votes: 6

READ 3 COMMENTS
  • None says:

    Seems to be no immediate responses so far; no matter what this says. Trump goin to beat him
    Regardless

    Sorry by independent

  • C-Lei says:

    He will cost Biden far more votes than Trump, especially in red and purple states. Once the DemocRATS figure that out, do not be surprised if the so-called Kennedy curse arises to remove him from the competition. The DemocRAT (See: Communist) Party has always done everything it can to ensure another Kennedy never makes it to the Oval (Oral in Clinton’s case) office.

  • Rita says:

    I was all for RFK Jr. until I watched an interview he did about his relationship with Epstein. When he is lying he blinks his eyes way more than usual.

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