RFK Jr. Comes to Michigan

On February 10, independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy held a campaign rally for several hundred supporters at the St. Cecilia Music Center in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

Kennedy spoke for 35 minutes. After a brief introduction, in which he advised all Americans to watch Tucker Carlson’s recent interview of Russian President Vladimir Putin, he accused politicians of not being transparent about the factors he believes contribute to diseases including autism and childhood diabetes.

“We’re being poisoned, and we’re being told to blame ourselves,” he said. 

Kennedy suggested that among the 13 potential causes of an uptick in chronic diseases in the past 30 years are the herbicides glyphosate and atrazine, flame retardants, and high-fructose corn syrup.

“We’re the sickest people on the face of the earth. We’re the sickest people in the history of the world from chronic disease,” he stated.


Kennedy, a son of the late Sen. Robert F. Kennedy (D-NY) and nephew of President John F. Kennedy (D), initially declared his candidacy in the Democratic primary, but he changed course and announced an independent campaign on October 9, 2023. He has repeatedly accused the Democratic Party of refusing to allow a competitive primary.

During his speech, Kennedy criticized the leaders of the two-party system for, in his view, “censoring speech” and “stifling debate,” for instance by filing lawsuits to keep former President Donald Trump (R) off the ballot in various states. He pledged to prevent “endless wars” and mitigate the influence of corporations such as BlackRock, State Street, and Vanguard.

In conversation with the press after the event, Kennedy discussed the war in Ukraine. “This is a war that should’ve never been fought. It is not so much a Ukrainian war as a proxy war by the United States against Russia,” he said.

Kennedy also denied allegations from the Democratic National Committee’s (DNC) recent federal election complaint that he and a super PAC supporting his campaign were illegally coordinating to collect signatures for him to appear on the general election ballot. “It’s just another effort by the DNC to avoid an election and try to remove people, candidates who are opposing President Biden from the ballot using the legal system,” Kennedy remarked.

Kennedy is polling in a distant third place across the country. According to the RealClearPolling poll average, Kennedy is at 16.8 percent, trailing Trump, at 39.0 percent, and President Joe Biden (D), at 34.0 percent. The last independent presidential candidate to receive more than 16.8 percent of the national vote was Ross Perot, who won 18.9 percent in 1992.

February 10 was Kennedy’s last scheduled visit to Michigan before the Democratic and Republican presidential primaries, to be held on February 27. The Kennedy campaign continues this month with events in New Jersey, New York, and California.

(Visited 402 times, 1 visits today)

About Chris Coffey and Alex Stamell

Chris Coffey and Alex Stamell are editors in chief emeriti of the Michigan Review.