RFK Jr re-ups Trump debate challenge, suggesting venue in ‘perfect neutral territory’

Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. on Tuesday reignited his call to debate former President Trump, suggesting ‘perfect neutral territory’ at the upcoming Libertarian Party convention as the venue. 

In a message on X, RFK Jr. acknowledged how both he and Trump are already scheduled to speak at the convention on May 24 and 25 in Washington, D.C.

‘It’s perfect neutral territory for you and me to have a debate where you can defend your record for your wavering supporters,’ Kennedy wrote to Trump. ‘You yourself have said you’re not afraid to debate me as long as my poll numbers are decent. Well, they are. In fact, I’m the only presidential candidate in history who has polled ahead of both major party candidates in head-to-head races.’ 

‘So let’s meet at the Libertarian convention and show the American public that at least two of the major candidates aren’t afraid to debate each other,’ he added. ‘I asked the convention organizers and they are game for us to use our time there to bring the American people the debate they deserve!’ 

Kennedy said he was ‘grateful’ to Trump for ‘calling attention to the rigged polling methodologies that biased DNC-influenced media have used against you.’ 

‘We have this concern too, and I’m happy to show you the deceptive methodologies used by DNC-allied pollsters who pretend that I’m in single digits. You have correctly characterized these as ‘fake polls,” he said. 

Kennedy pointed to polling results from Zogby, an analytics firm he contracted. The independent presidential candidate said that poll shows Trump beat President Biden ‘handily’ in a head-to-head matchup.

‘I crush him as well, by even more. And against each other, I beat you in a nail-biter,’ RFK Jr. claimed. ‘In a three-way, you are ahead but I’m coming up strong. Two new polls (CNN and Quinnipiac) have me above the 15% debate threshold. Another (Activote) has me at 26% among young voters. And you and I are tied among America’s 70 million Independents.’ 

RFK. Jr. said he is also drawing a lot of voters from former Trump supporters who are ‘upset that you blew up the deficit, shut down their businesses during Covid, and filled your administration with swamp creatures.’ 

Six months before Election Day, Biden and Trump – the presumptive Democrat and Republican nominees – are locked in the first contest in 112 years with a current and former president competing for the White House. Kennedy, meanwhile, has increasingly been challenging Biden and Trump to debate him in recent weeks, hoping to bring his independent candidacy more mainstream.  

Kennedy’s campaign remains determined to get him on the ballot in all 50 states. So far, RFK Jr. is on the ballot in 10 states, The Hill reported. 

Either Biden or Trump would be the oldest president ever sworn in on Inauguration Day.

Trump is in the midst of the first of potentially four criminal trials and facing felony charges. The Constitution does not prevent him from assuming the presidency if convicted — or even if he is in prison.

Biden, who will turn 82 years old just weeks after Election Day, Nov. 5, is already the oldest president in U.S. history; Trump is 77.

Privately, Democratic operatives close to the campaign worry constantly about Biden’s health and voters’ dim perceptions of it, according to The Associated Press. In recent weeks, aides have begun walking at Biden’s side as he strolls to and from Marine One, the presidential helicopter, on the White House South Lawn in an apparent effort to help mask the president’s stiff gait.

Still, neither party is making serious contingency plans, assuming the general election matchup is all but set. 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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