Headline RoundupJune 20th, 2024

RFK Jr. Fails to Qualify for June 27 Presidential Debate

Summary from the AllSides News Team

Independent candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. did not meet the requirements for CNN’s (Lean Left bias) June 27 presidential debate by Thursday’s deadline.

The Details: To participate in the debate, candidates had to receive at least 15% support in four national polls meeting CNN’s standards and achieve ballot access in enough states to have a chance at winning the minimum 270 Electoral College votes needed to win the presidency. By Thursday, Kennedy had only received 15% support in three national polls and only got on the ballot in six states — California, Delaware, Hawaii, Michigan, Oklahoma, and Utah — amounting to 89 electoral votes. 

Key Quote: Kennedy accused CNN of illegally conspiring with Trump and Biden, saying his “exclusion” from the debate was “undemocratic, un-American, and cowardly.” 

For Context: Kennedy’s absence means the CNN debate will be a one-on-one between President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump. No independent or third-party candidate has joined the presidential debate stage since Ross Perot in 1992. 

How the Media Covered It: Coverage appeared generally similar across the spectrum on Thursday; a Newsmax (Right bias) headline stood out by highlighting that Green Party candidate Jill Stein also failed to meet the debate requirements.

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