How RFK, Jr. Could Change the Outcome of the 2024 Election
There are few things you can be more certain of in life than a Democrat or a Republican winning a US presidential election. We don’t usually do third parties or independents in this country. Chances are Democrat Joe Biden or Republican Donald Trump will be elected a year from now.
But it would be foolish to dismiss what the current polls are telling us: Independent Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. is polling higher than any independent or third-party candidate in a generation. He, along with other non-major-party candidates, has a real chance to affect the outcome of the 2024 election.
The last independent presidential candidate to earn over 20% support in a poll within a year of the election was Ross Perot in 1992. He ended up getting 19% of the popular vote.
Perot is a bit of an exception in that independent or third-party candidates usually fade as an election nears. John Anderson was polling above 20% during the 1980 campaign, before pulling in just 7% in November. In 1968, former Alabama Gov. George Wallace topped out at 21% in pre-election polling as a third-party candidate before picking up 14% when the votes were cast.
The amazing thing, though, is that these three have been the only non-major-party candidates in the history of polling to hit more than 20% within a year of the election. Kennedy is now part of this select group.