RFK Jr.’s signatures.  may be void in Nevada without VP
RFK Jr.’s signatures.  may be void in Nevada without VP

After Robert F. Kennedy Jr. was set to reveal his running mate on Tuesday, an unforeseen problem arose in Nevada, complicating the longtime independent’s path to getting on the ballot in the Silver State.

Kennedy’s choice for vice president comes as he needs a vice president to qualify for the election in several states. And despite the campaign’s announcement earlier this month that it had collected 15,000 signatures in Nevada, more than needed to get on the ballot in November, the campaign may be forced to start from scratch in the state because it failed to name a candidate for a candidate when he filed the Kennedy petition, according to documents filed by Kennedy.

Nevada’s presidential candidate manual states that independent candidate petitions must include the names of the presidential and vice presidential candidates on the petition to be valid, the Nevada Secretary of State’s office confirmed.

Documents requested by the Nevada office revealed that Kennedy named himself in the petition, in violation of the rules and invalidating the signatures collected in the state by his campaign.

While that setback pushes him one step short of his goal of securing a spot on the ballot in all 50 states, the campaign still has time to collect new signatures after Kennedy’s running mate is chosen on Tuesday. The Nevada petition deadline is August 7.

The Kennedy campaign said it had not yet sent the signatures to the Nevada office.

The campaign did not respond to requests for comment.

Where is Kennedy on the ballot?

The only state to confirm Kennedy is on the ballot is Utah. Each state has different laws for getting an independent candidate on the ballot, making it one of the most difficult parts of the campaign for a non-major party candidate.

Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. poses with supporters during a meet and greet after a campaign rally at the St. Cecilia Music Center on February 10, 2024 in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Emily Elkonin/Getty Images

In New Hampshire, independent candidates must file a statement of intent during the June filing period before submitting at least 3,000 signatures to the New Hampshire Secretary of State’s office.

The Hawaii Elections Office confirmed that Kennedy supporters had collected enough signatures to form the We the People party, which could then name Kennedy as its presidential candidate on the ballot. New Hampshire and Hawaii also require a vice presidential nominee to be nominated before Kennedy can get on the ballot in either state.

It’s unclear whether signatures collected in other states that require independent presidential candidates to be named to gain access to the ballot will also be affected.

A pro-Kennedy super PAC, American Values ​​2024, helped collect signatures for ballot access and said in December it planned to spend $10 million to $15 million on the effort. But in February, Democratic National Committee filed a complaint with the Federal Election Commission against Kennedy independent presidential campaign and the super PAC supporting him, American Values ​​2024, alleging the two illegally colluded to access ballots for Kennedy.

American Values ​​2024 said it would stop collecting ballot access signatures on its behalf after it said it met signature thresholds in Arizona, Michigan, Georgia and South Carolina.

The PAC is now refocusing its efforts in an effort to counter efforts by Democrats and Republicans to weaken third-party campaigns.

“Given the success of the campaign, we are no longer collecting signatures in any additional states and will continue to fight [Democratic National Committee] or [Republican National Committee] when they attempt to interfere with the constitutional right of American voters to want independent candidates on the ballot en masse,” the PAC said in a press release earlier this month.

The Nevada Secretary of State’s office said that on March 7 — two days after Kennedy announced that his campaign had reached the signature threshold — he sent a memo to all independent presidential candidates filing ballot access petitions that it specifically states that their office papers must consist of “a statement of candidacy and a petition of candidacy, in which the person must also name a candidate for vice president.”

For the major parties, the vice presidential nominee is traditionally announced near the nominating conventions, and the presidential and vice presidential nominees formally accept their parties’ nomination at the convention. The Democratic National Convention will be held August 19-24, and the Republican National Convention will be held July 15-18.

By admin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *