Trump campaign made ‘early on’ efforts to recruit RFK Jr. as running mate – with insiders saying they ‘wouldn’t write off’ the former Democratic candidate, 70, from the former president’s ticket
As Donald Trump cruises toward the GOP presidential nomination after winning the first two Republican primaries, speculation has turned to who he might choose as his running mate.
But those in the former president’s orbit reportedly made ‘early’ efforts to recruit a surprise challenger – former Democratic candidate RFK Jr.
The now-independent presidential candidate caught the Trump campaign’s eye “right out of the box when Bobby announced his run for the White House in April 2023,” insiders told the New York Post.
“Trump operatives expressed interest in Kennedy early on, but it was all premature,” they said. Despite the unlikely pairing, the source explained: ‘Anything is possible. I wouldn’t write it off in any way.’
While Kennedy may not be out of the running, Trump cryptically told voters earlier this month that he had already chosen his candidate – but declined to name names.
Robert F. Kennedy Jr. was reportedly approached by Trump’s campaign ‘early’ in the election cycle, with an insider saying they ‘wouldn’t rule it out’
Trump teased earlier this month that he had already decided who he would pick as his running mate, but declined to name names amid heated speculation
Kennedy initially ran for the Democratic nomination last spring, but dropped out and ran as an independent in October because he argued the system was rigged to automatically nominate President Biden.
While a political outsider who has never held public office, Kennedy’s campaign has surprised analysts as he increasingly seeks to become a ‘spoiled’ candidate for the two-party system.
Recent polls have found Kennedy pulling upwards of 20 percent support nationwide in a hypothetical general election.
However, since pollsters found that his Libertarian platform would draw more of Trump’s base than Biden’s in a close race, it’s no big surprise that Trump’s team could recruit him.
A major donor who financed both Trump’s and Kennedy’s campaigns told the Post that the possibility of a Trump – RFJ Jr. ticket remains on the table.
‘It’s very much behind the scenes at this stage. As we progress, you might see it bubble up a little more,’ the donor said.
“Bobby can bring new people to the polls.”
Timothy Mellon, a megadonor who has poured at least $5 million into Kennedy’s SuperPAC, added: ‘I’ve heard the concept. It’s not surprising.’
The idea that Kennedy would appear on the ballot with Trump was previously floated by former White House strategist Steve Bannon, who said in August that the hypothetical ticket would end in a “massive landslide” for Trump.
While Kennedy may remain a far-fetched candidate, a slew of other names have been floated as potential VPs.
Businessman Vivek Ramaswamy (left) was floated as a potential Trump running mate after dropping out of the Republican primary.
North Dakota Governor Kristi Noem has often been considered a possible option, although an alleged cheating scandal uncovered by DailyMail.com may have hurt her chances
Trump’s former press secretary and current governor of Arkansas, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, was a loyal ally of the former president.
After businessman Vivek Ramaswamy’s exit from the Republican primary, the gun-toting conservative emerged as a possible option for the former president.
As Trump won the New Hampshire primary, Ramaswamy’s speech praising the front-runner was met with chants of ‘VP, VP, VP’ from Trump’s crowd.
“He’s going to work with us for a long time,” Trump responded to the reception.
Another name that has been floated regularly is Trump’s former White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
Now, Arkansas Governor Huckabee Sanders has remained a loyal Trump ally during his time out of office — and fits the bill, as many analysts believe Trump needs to recruit a female candidate to help his numbers with female voters .
However, North Dakota Governor Kristi Noem’s chances took a hit late last year as DailyMail.com exclusively revealed her relationship with Trump’s former campaign manager Corey Lewandowski.
The married governor, 51, was seen as an excellent VP choice because of her ‘family values’ platform – but may have slipped in the running mate rankings after the bombshell report.