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RFK Jr. names Nicole Shanahan as running mate

Shanahan, 38, is a wealthy tech attorney who helped pay for a pro-Kennedy Super Bowl commercial.
RFK Jr. to reportedly name Nicole Shanahan as running mate
Posted at 10:57 AM, Mar 26, 2024

Independent presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. named Silicon Valley lawyer Nicole Shanahan as his running mate on Tuesday.

Kennedy made the announcement at a campaign event Tuesday in Oakland, California. 

Shanahan, 38, is a wealthy tech attorney who was previously married to Google co-founder Sergey Brin. The couple split in 2022 following allegations she had an affair with Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk — which she vehemently denies.

Despite having little political experience, Shanahan has previously donated large amounts of money to Democratic campaigns, including Joe Biden in 2020, according to The New York Times. She also helped pay for a pro-Kennedy Super Bowl political ad that drew some criticism from members of his family who have tried to distance themselves from his presidential campaign.

SEE MORE: Third-party candidates could swing 2024 election

Kennedy's choice of Shanahan as his running mate puts an end to speculation around a number of other high-profile names, which included NFL quarterback Aaron Rodgers and former Minnesota governor and professional wrestler Jesse Ventura. Sources told the Times that both men welcomed the consideration. 

Kennedy's campaign is still considered a long-shot, but it's one that's getting noticed by President Joe Biden and former President Donald Trump — who are their party's presumptive presidential nominees. A recent poll conducted by Emerson College and The Hill had Kennedy polling at 5% in Michigan — compared to 43% for Trump and 41% for Biden.  

While it may not seem like much, both the Biden and Trump campaigns are taking the threat of a third-party challenge this November seriously. The Democratic National Committee is even building a team to combat the rise of independent candidates.

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