Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy (RFK) Jr. has accused President Joe Biden and GOP frontrunner Donald Trump of “colluding” to keep the election between themselves by excluding him from the debates.

“Presidents Trump and Biden are colluding to lock America into a head-to-head match-up that 70% say they do not want,” Kennedy wrote. “They are trying to exclude me from their debate because they are afraid I would win. Keeping viable candidates off the debate stage undermines democracy.”

He further claimed 43 percent of the electorate identity as independent and that the Trump and Biden want to “avoid discussion of their eight years of mutual failure including deficits, wars, lockdowns, chronic disease, and inflation.”

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As Valuetainment reported earlier today, President Biden announced he would be refusing to participate in the three debates hosted by the nonpartisan Commission on Presidential debates. Instead, Biden offered to debate Trump twice before the election at events hosted by media organizations. Trump almost immediately responded in agreement to a debate hosted by CNN on June 27th. Shortly after, he also agreed to a September 10th debate held by ABC News.

As NBC News points out, Kennedy would not qualify for the CNN debate in Atlanta according to its criteria of a 15 percent polling threshold and the candidates’ “appear[ance] on a sufficient number of state ballots to reach the 270 electoral vote threshold to win the presidency prior to the eligibility deadline.” Kennedy currently only qualifies for two out of four qualifying polls. ABC has similar criteria. As of today, Kennedy potentially qualifies for 187 electoral votes, according to his campaign.

Kennedy has to complete various tasks in order to appear on state ballots. In Ohio, he must submit a certain number of signatures—which his team claims to already have. But a local Cleveland outlet reported that the Kennedy campaign will be waiting to submit the signatures until it is closer to the deadline, which is set at August 7th. Meanwhile, in Texas, the state secretary said the Kennedy campaign submitted the signatures but they are still under review.

In an interview with Catholic network EWTN, Kennedy recently said he is not submitting signatures early to circumvent the Democratic National Convention’s tactics of censure and investigation.

In a recent interview, Kennedy told Raymond Arroyo, of the Catholic network EWTN, that his campaign is not submitting signatures in some states immediately to avoid extra scrutiny from the Democratic National Committee.

“The DNC has its enormous operation, they had $3 billion to spend to try to keep us off the ballot,” he said. “We are not releasing our signatures until the last minute because it just gives them you know, more targets to hit, much shorter period of time.”

Shane Devine is a writer covering politics and business for VT and a regular guest on The Unusual Suspects. Follow Shane’s work here.

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