In VP Choice, RFK, Jr. Takes Chapter From Ed Clark


Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons


Recently Kevin Price, Host of the nationally syndicated Price of Business Show, interviewed attorney, Lee Kaplan.

Kevin Price, Editor at Large for USABR and Host of the nationally syndicated Price of Business show, recently interviewed Lee Kaplan of the business law firm, Smyser, Kaplan, and Veselka about the politics of Texas and nationwide. Kaplan is a long time contributor of the Price of Business show and brings important perspectives on politics, business, and the law.

Price and Kaplan discuss RFK, Jr.’s choice for a VP candidate.
The New York Times reports “In an explicit play for young voters and Americans disillusioned by the state of the country’s politics, Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on Tuesday named Nicole Shanahan, a 38-year-old Silicon Valley lawyer, investor and political unknown, as his running mate in his independent presidential bid.”
It may be about “young voters”, but Price and Kaplan wonder if there is more to it than that. It reminded Price of the candidacy of Ed Clark in 1980.  A failed candidacy as far as winning, but a successful one for raising awareness of the Libertarian Party.
In 1980, Ed Clark won and astonishing 1 million votes in his campaign for President. This was significant  by third party standards.  Much of this — maybe all of it — happened to Clark’s running mate, billionaire David Koch.
Essentially, Koch brought two things:
  • Financial Backing: David Koch, along with his brother Charles, were already wealthy businessmen at the head of Koch Industries. By selecting Koch, Clark secured significant financial backing for the campaign. Reports suggest Koch personally contributed a large sum, allowing the Libertarian ticket to self-fund and run national advertising, something typically out of reach for third-party candidates
  • Shared Ideology: The Libertarian Party is known for its focus on individual liberty and limited government. David Koch’s business background likely aligned with these principles, making him an ideological fit for the campaign.
Nicole Shanahan as a VP candidate brings similar things to  Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.’s efforts. The New York Times goes on to say “Ms. Shanahan, who was formerly married to the Google co-founder Sergey Brin, has already contributed more than $4.5 million to help Mr. Kennedy’s bid. Mr. Kennedy faces a costly effort to get on the ballot in all 50 states, as he says he will try to do. And he had a tighter timeline to name a vice-presidential choice, because some states require a full ticket to be on the petition for independent candidates to be placed on the ballot.”
Furthermore, both Shanahan have shared beliefs about vaccinations. Her daughter is on the Autism spectrum and she has discussed the possibility that this was due to vaccinations she had.  This makes it appear that RFK Jr., intends to be heavily anti-vax focused, which isn’t winning issue in the eyes of most pundits.

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