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RFK Jr. campaign official attended Jan. 6 ‘Stop the Steal’ rally and wanted ‘favorite President’ Trump to run for third term

By Andrew Kaczynski, CNN

(CNN) — A New York-based campaign official for Robert F. Kennedy Jr. who raised the possibility that voting for the independent presidential candidate would help Donald Trump defeat President Joe Biden previously promoted false claims that the 2020 election was rigged and attended “Stop the Steal” rallies after the election, including the rally on January 6, 2021, in Washington, DC, that preceded the deadly riot at the US Capitol.

Rita Palma, who has identified herself as the Kennedy campaign’s state director in New York, also repeatedly called Trump her “favorite president,” according to tweets along with comments she posted on the conservative social media site Parler that have since been made private.

According to a KFILE examination of those now-private posts, Palma also posed for a photo at the former Trump International Hotel in Washington, DC, alongside Sidney Powell – the pro-Trump attorney who pleaded guilty in Georgia’s election subversion case.

In February 2021, Palma tweeted her support for Trump as a presidential candidate in 2024 and even asked whether he could run for a third term in 2028 – which is not constitutionally allowed as a president can serve only two full terms.

“#Trump2024 Can he run in 2028 too?” she tweeted, posting a meme that said she would vote for Trump in 2024.

In one comment, Palma dismissed suggestions from then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell that Trump was to blame for violence at the Capitol.

“Actually the fault lies with the rigged election. Genius,” she wrote the day after the riot.

There is no indication Palma went to the Capitol or was violent on January 6, but tweets from that day show her in DC for Trump’s rally. Palma later dismissed that day’s violence as the work of a few attendees.

“Jan 6 was not a riot. A small group of people were trouble. It was 99.9 peaceful, respectful. I was there,” she wrote.

CNN reviewed Palma’s now-private tweets on the Internet Archive Wayback Machine, where she included the hashtag #BidenCheated 86 times from November 2020 to February 2021.

Palma’s promotion and attendance at “Stop the Steal” events after the 2020 election reflects a segment of support Kennedy has received from Trump supporters, particularly as a means of helping the former president retake the White House in 2024.

One of the biggest donors to Kennedy’s super PAC, Timothy Mellon, is also a major donor to Trump. And polls have suggested Kennedy could take critical votes away from Biden.

CNN was first to report that Palma told a gathering of New York state Republicans that efforts to put Kennedy on the ballot in New York would help “get rid of Biden,” which she called her “No. 1 priority.”

“The only way that Trump can even, remote possibility of taking New York is if Bobby is on the ballot. If it’s Trump vs. Biden, Biden wins. Biden wins six days, seven days a week. With Bobby in the mix, anything can happen,” Palma said in a video of the meeting viewed by CNN.

“The only way for him, for Bobby, to shake it up and to get rid of Biden is if he’s on the ballot in every state, including New York,” she continued.

The Kennedy campaign has since distanced itself from Palma. Amaryllis Fox, Kennedy’s campaign director, said in a statement posted on X that Palma was hired by the campaign as a ballot-access consultant and that she doesn’t shape electoral strategy, adding that Palma’s remarks in a circulated video were made as a private citizen.

Palma did not respond to a CNN request for comment but on Tuesday afternoon posted to her Facebook page: “Wow- look at that news cycle. I guess the MSM doesn’t like little ole me exercising my 1A rights? Hi, CNN!”

Tweets dating to November 2020 show Palma repeatedly volunteering to go to and attending numerous pro-Trump rallies and events – even tweeting at “Stop the Steal” organizer Ali Alexander she would go to Georgia for a week as the state was recounting votes.

“We are rooting for you @realDonaldTrump Bigly. YUGE rooting. Biggest fan club EVER. #WeLoveYou #BestPresidentEver45  #FourMoreYears,” she wrote on November 19, 2020.

Palma also repeatedly expressed an affinity for Powell, one of Trump’s election lawyers who promoted unhinged conspiracy theories about nationwide vote-rigging and who filed meritless lawsuits to overturn the results.

“You were born/ chosen for this fight and you will win, win, win. WE LOVE YOU, TOO!” she tweeted at Powell.

In another tweet on December 11, 2020, Palma called Powell “MY PERSON OF THE DECADE!!” and posted a photo of the pair at the former Trump International Hotel in DC.

Last year, Powell pleaded guilty in the Georgia election subversion case, in which Trump and a host of co-defendants are accused of orchestrating a broad conspiracy aimed at overturning Biden’s 2020 electoral win in the state.

It appears that Palma was in DC to attend the “Million MAGA March” on December 12, 2020, as she posted photos on Twitter driving to the rally and posted on the day of the rally.

“#MAGAMillionMarch  #MAGA #TrumpWon #BidenCheated #46DoesNotExist,” she wrote.

In late December, Palma tweeted she would attend the January 6, 2021, “Stop the Steal” rally, writing in two tweets, “I got my hotel room!” and “I’ll be there in Jan 6th #FightforTrump #Jan6.”

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