RFK Jr.’s running mate calls out Dem Rep who called for her to step down, says he sang a different tune in private

Robert Kennedy Jr.’s running mate isn’t taking any bait from either the mainstream media or from a Democratic lawmaker who called on her to “step down” to keep Donald Trump out of the White House.

Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Calif.) penned a letter to Nicole Shanahan, but rather than send it to her, he shared it with CBS News.

“Even Trump himself, and other members of his team, have admitted that a RFK Jr. ticket will help his reelection,” Khanna wrote.

“While you may have fair disagreements on the Democratic Party’s platform,” his letter continued, “it is clear that a second term for Trump would be disastrous for climate and undo the work of President Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act, the most significant action Congress has taken on clean energy and climate change in our nation’s history.”

When contacted by CBS News for comment, Shanahan posted the communication and her response on X.

“I have received a letter from Rep. Ro Khanna, intended for Nicole Shanahan, urging her to step down as RFK Jr.’s running mate,” CBS told the veep hopeful. “In the letter, Rep. Khanna warns Shanahan that supporting Kennedy could aid Trump’s return to the White House and have negative environmental consequences.”

“According to Khanna, Shanahan sought his advice before accepting Kennedy’s offer. CBS News plans to publish this story tomorrow morning,” CBS said. “If you would like to comment, please note that my deadline is this evening.”

“This is my full response to CBS (I want to bring this discussion back to the people, because I am beholden to you the people and not the corporate press),” Shanahan stated on X.

Her statement read:

In my conversation with Ro he congratulated me on the position and encouraged me to run, stating that every American has the right to run in this country. He stated that we live in a democracy, and it was wrong for anyone to threaten me against running.

Clearly, Ro has changed his stance based on pressure from the party. I hope he understands how anti-democratic it is to ask someone to step down from a race that empowers the American public to make their own decisions.

I am very disappointed that he has been pressured into issuing this letter to me publicly. He could have called me privately. He has my direct line.

Khanna came out of CBS’s shadow to walk his letter back on X.

“Nicole has every right to be on the ticket,” he wrote. “My point to her both publicly and privately has been that RFK’s ticket threatens the very issues she cares about –such as climate and abortion rights and to welcome her into the Democratic Party.”

Shanahan wasn’t having it.

“You have my phone number and could have called instead of going to the press,” she told the California lawmaker. “This is performative.”

Shanahan’s running mate could not have been more proud.

“Im so grateful for your courage and grace Nicole,” Kennedy replied to her on X. “I have always admired RoKhanna. His flip flop here is disappointing. The party has power to bludgeon men of character into waivering [sic].”

Supporters of the Independent ticket agreed.

“‘Men of character’ have [the] courage to stand up,” noted one user. “Sadly, @RoKhanna does not have that.”

Melissa Fine


We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, profanity, vulgarity, doxing, or discourteous behavior. If a comment is spam, instead of replying to it please click the ∨ icon below and to the right of that comment. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain fruitful conversation.

Latest Articles