Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and his organization, Children’s Health Defense, have frequently allied with QAnon conspiracy theorists over the past several years, appearing with them at events, praising them, partnering with them on lawsuits, and featuring them in videos.
Kennedy founded and has chaired the anti-vaccine group Children’s Health Defense (although he is currently on leave from the organization as he runs for president). As Media Matters recently documented, CHD has a history of conducting outreach to neo-Nazi, white supremacist, and QAnon supporters on Gab, a far-right social media platform that has been a haven for violent threats against Jewish people.
In recent years, Kennedy has built alliances with anti-vaccine and far-right figures. He has been a guest on the programs of Steve Bannon, Tucker Carlson, Laura Ingraham, Stew Peters, and Charlie Kirk. He has also promoted right-wing organizations Project Veritas, The Epoch Times, and Judicial Watch.
Right-wing media, in turn, have praised his presidential campaign and expressed hope that it will help Trump win the 2024 election. Trump ally and self-described Kennedy “friend” Roger Stone, for instance, said Kennedy’s campaign “will help in the end soften Joe Biden up for his defeat by Donald Trump in the general election.”
Kennedy and CHD have also allied with numerous QAnon conspiracy theorists. The intersection is part of a larger convergence between the anti-vaccine and QAnon movements that took place during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The following are numerous examples of Kennedy and/or Children’s Health Defense promoting, partnering, or participating in events with QAnon conspiracy theorists in recent years.
Charlene and Ty Bollinger
Charlene and Ty Bollinger are COVID-19 and health conspiracy theorists. The Bollingers have repeatedly promoted the QAnon conspiracy theory, as the Center for Countering Digital Hate has documented, including tweeting the hashtags “QAnon” and “WWG1WGA” (an acronym for the QAnon slogan “where we go one, we go all”). Kennedy has also been incorporated into the Bollingers’ QAnon branding: When Charlene Bollinger interviewed Kennedy, the Brighteon video page of the Bollingers’ PAC included the tag: “truth wwg1wga.”
Kennedy and the Bollingers are closely connected: The Associated Press wrote in a May 2021 investigation that “the couple work closely with others prominent in the anti-vaccine movement — including Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and his Children’s Health Defense — to drive sales through affiliate marketing relationships.”
Stephanie Locricchio, whose Twitter bio includes the hashtag “MAGA,” is the advocacy and outreach manager for CHD. She also hosts videos for the organization. As Media Matters previously noted, she has spread QAnon content on social media.
In June 2020, for instance, he published “step-by-step QAnon instructions” for people to network with QAnon followers. He added (emphasis in original): “Once you have a firm understanding of what’s really going on, share in social media and defend President Trump and Q with the truth. We are in an INFORMATION WAR. The first step is for us all to be informed – I am giving you the path to that – and then to share it yourself with others.”
CHD featured Cook in a 2022 video on its website, where he discussed “the first in his series of short documentary films about healthy unvaccinated families.”
Kanekoa is a QAnon influencer who is active on social media. CHD published an anti-vaccine post by Kanekoa in January 2023 and cited the account in another piece. Kennedy has also promoted Kanekoa on his Twitter account.
Mel K is a streaming host who has repeatedly promoted QAnon and claimed that “99%” of the conspiracy theory has been proven true. She appeared at an October 2021 anti-vaccine event in New York alongside Kennedy; a CHD tweet embedded a promotional image for the event with an image of Kennedy near an image of Mel K. And CHD’s website streamed her and Kennedy’s remarks.
Zach Vorhies is an anti-vaccine conspiracy theorist who previously leaked documents to far-right group Project Veritas. He has frequently promoted QAnon, including writing: “We are in full revolution mode. Follow Q and join in”; “Boom, new Q - very important”; and “I use Q as one source of many that I use to share information with you.”
Creative Destruction Media
Creative Destruction Media is an outlet operated by L. Todd Wood. It published a November 2020 piece headlined “Q Was Right.” The piece, which carried the byline “CD Media Staff,” told readers: “After exhaustive meetings with sources in Ukraine, who provided reams of documentary evidence for hours, CDMedia has been exposed to a massive international criminal conspiracy which spans continents and decades. Q was right. Our wold is run by a criminal syndicate unlike mankind has ever known.”
Querdenken 711 is a German group that hosted Kennedy during an August 2020 anti-vaccine rally. Querdenken has tied itself to the QAnon movement, as The Daily Beast reported.
The New York Times also wrote in October 2020: “Michael Ballweg, a Stuttgart-based software entrepreneur who founded Querdenken-711, the organization that has been at the center of protests against coronavirus restrictions, recently started referencing QAnon.” (Kennedy claimed in response to criticism that Querdenken is not QAnon.)
The ReAwaken America Tour
That event also featured, among others, QAnon conspiracy theorists Scott McKay, Rachel Hamm, Charlene Bollinger, and Ann Vandersteel. QAnon supporter Michael Flynn is the co-founder of the tour and spoke in Anaheim.
As The Associated Press noted, Kennedy appeared in a group photo — since removed — with Charlene Bollinger, Flynn, and Trump ally Roger Stone at the time of the event. (Kennedy later distanced himself from the tour after its antisemitic connections, including to McKay, were documented.)
“NCSWIC” and state Sen. Janae Shamp
The Arizona chapter of Children’s Health Defense co-sponsored the May 2023 Novel Coronavirus South Western Intergovernmental Committee, which Republicans call “NCSWIC.” That acronym also happens to stand for the QAnon slogan “nothing can stop what is coming.” In response to criticism, Republicans initially denied that it was a nod to QAnon, but Media Matters later reported that committee chair and state Sen. Janae Shamp is a QAnon supporter who previously used the QAnon phrase. CHD’s website streamed the committee’s activities.
CHD’s Arizona chapter appears to also be familiar with QAnon propaganda — under a directory for “podcasts and live tv,” it lists Brighteon TV, writing that it streams “Matrixxx Grooove,” a QAnon show.