Buckley to RFK Jr. – “Don’t go to PorcFest”

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Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on March 3, 2023. Photo/Andrew Sylvia

CONCORD, N.H. – On Friday, New Hampshire Democratic Party Chairman Ray Buckley issued a statement requesting that Democratic presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. not attend the annual Porcupine Freedom Festival, also known as PorcFest. Here is his letter to Kennedy.

Dear Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.,

We have recently become aware of your scheduled appearance as a speaker at the annual Porcupine Freedom Festival, or “PorcFest” on Thursday, June 22, 2023.  Porcfest is sponsored by the libertarian extremist organization called Free State Project. We respect your dedication to public service and your family’s irreplaceable role in the history of our Republic. However, we must express our serious disappointment and grave concerns about your planned participation in this event.

The Free State Project is an organization that has been active for two decades. Its express goal is to encourage libertarians from across America to move to New Hampshire to seize control of government on the state and local level and impose a dystopian lifestyle on the people of the Granite State. Their vision of eliminating New Hampshire’s tradition of caring for the common good is fundamentally at odds with the values of the NH Democratic Party. We feel it is essential to underscore the fact that the Free State Project’s dark, dystopian philosophy and their actions have already had a significant and negative impact on New Hampshire. 

Over the years, members of the Free State Project have campaigned to — and taken direct measures towards — significantly cutting funding for New Hampshire public schools, resulting in deep turmoil within individual communities and a sweeping, statewide expansion of a school voucher scheme that is detrimental to our cherished public education system. They also reject common-sense gun control measures, advocating instead for absolute unrestricted access to firearms by anyone. This in addition to pushing a concerted legislative effort towards having New Hampshire secede from the United States. These stances are not only contrary to the values of the Democratic Party but also, we believe, detrimental to the well-being of the people of New Hampshire. 

“Free Staters” have infiltrated and in many cases taken control of the New Hampshire Republican Party at all levels. Free Staters are nearly universally Republican primary voters, they are highly unlikely to vote in the Democratic Primary. Free Staters view with hostility our candidates, elected officials, values and our party as a whole. 

We understand that there are a few areas of agreement between your campaign and the Free State Project, however, we believe that these small numbers of shared interests do not offset the damage that the Free State Project’s broader agenda has done to our state. 

As a candidate for the presidency and a figure who commands considerable public attention, your presence at PorcFest will be seen as an endorsement of the Free State Project and its radical goals. Your presence will lend legitimacy to an extremist movement that aggressively works against the interests of New Hampshire residents.

We ask that you reconsider your decision to attend and speak at PorcFest. Instead, we invite you to engage with the people of New Hampshire through other venues and forums that better align with the Democratic Party’s vision for a fair, inclusive, and prosperous society.

We look forward to hearing your response.

Kennedy later responded on social media stating that national Democratic leaders promote censorship.

The Democratic Party Bosses who promote censorship, who have stripped New Hampshire of its rightful First in the Nation primary status, who have shut down debate, who refuse to campaign in New Hampshire, are in no position to tell me who to talk to. I’m going to speak at Porcfest because I believe in freedom, unity, healing the divide, and truth.#LiveFreeorDie.

About this Author

Andrew Sylvia

Assistant EditorManchester Ink Link

Born and raised in the Granite State, Andrew Sylvia has written approximately 10,000 pieces over his career for outlets across Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont. On top of that, he's a licensed notary and licensed to sell property, casualty and life insurance, he's been a USSF trained youth soccer and futsal referee for the past six years and he can name over 60 national flags in under 60 seconds according to that flag game app he has on his phone, which makes sense because he also has a bachelor's degree in geography (like Michael Jordan). He can also type over 100 words a minute on a good day.