You know that childhood fear that all the cool kids from your class won’t come to your birthday party? Now, imagine that the cool kids did show up and publicly laughed in your face. Now you know how conspiracy theorist and presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy Jr. feels.
Kennedy, who added vocal vaccination denier Del Bigtree to his campaign, turns 70 on January 17. American Values 2024, a Kennedy-backing super PAC with a name easily confused with the Facebook password used by your great replacement-pushing Aunt Karen, decided to leverage this landmark event with a fundraising event featuring—per a tweet from the super PAC—a performance from famed tenor Andrea Bocelli, and “well-wisher guests” including Martin Sheen, Mike Tyson, and Dionne Warwick.
It’s a guest list fit for a joke that begins, “The West Wing president, a convicted rapist and alleged domestic abuser, and the only good person left on X (formerly Twitter) walk into a bar…” And a joke might be the best way to characterize it, as all four of these folks say they have no plan to attend the (per the Daily Mail) “multi-million dollar fundraiser” on January 22 at the desert town of Indian Wells.
Warwick responded to the announcement with confusion and dismay, tweeting, “I don’t know anything about this event.”
“I did not agree to it and I certainly won’t be there,” the “Walk on By” singer wrote.
Speaking with Page Six, Warwick also noted, “No, I’m not backing him. No, no, and no!”
A Bocelli representative also expressed confusion, telling Rolling Stone that the claims were false, and that “he will not even be in the U.S. this month.”
As for Sheen, an actor and activist who’s been arrested at least 66 times for his participation in civil actions and protests, made his denial in a since-expired Instagram story that’s been shared across social media. “I do not endorse RFK Jr., nor will I be attending his party,” he wrote.
Get Out villain Bradley Whitford, who on The West Wing played Sheen’s deputy chief of staff, tweeted in support of his former colleague. “There’s a story going around saying g that Martin Sheen is supporting @RobertKennedyJr for president. The story is incorrect,” Whitford wrote.
“Martin asked us to post this on his behalf. ‘I wholeheartedly support President Joe Biden and the democratic ticket in 2024. Sincerely, Martin Sheen.’”
Then there’s Tyson, who was convicted of rape in 1992 (but has steadfastly declared his innocence), was accused of raping another woman last year, and joked about the domestic violence allegations against him with Oprah Winfrey in 2009. He also appears to consider the RFK Jr. event beneath him, which is perhaps the knockout punch.
A representative for the former boxer told Page Six that “Mr. Tyson was invited to RFK’s bday celebration, which he cannot attend, not a fundraiser,” and that he won’t be going to the party.
American Values 2024 has yet to respond to a request for comment from Vanity Fair, but the Kennedy campaign said in a statement that all these shenanigans are not its fault. “The campaign doesn’t have anything to do with the organization of this event,” it wrote. “The campaign has no knowledge of who is attending and can’t confirm or deny anyone’s participation, either as entertainment or as a guest.”