In 1968, almost five years after the killing of President John F. Kennedy had stunned America, the hopes of Democrat voters were pinned on his idealistic younger brother.
At 42, Robert F. Kennedy was seeking nomination as Democrat presidential candidate. Yet no one realised that history was about to repeat itself in a brutal and shocking way.
6.30pm, Tuesday, June 4, 1968. Malibu, California
All day, Californians have been voting in a crucial primary. If Robert Kennedy wins, he’ll almost certainly get the Democratic nomination — then run for President against the Republicans‘ Richard Nixon.
Right now, Bobby — as everyone calls him — is setting off for his campaign HQ in downtown Los Angeles. Film director John Frankenheimer is at the wheel.
Bobby slumps exhausted in the passenger seat of his friend’s Rolls-Royce. For the past 80 days, he’s been criss-crossing America. In most places, he’s been greeted like a rock star, with people frantically trying to reach out and touch him.
The man currently in the White House, Lyndon B. Johnson, has seen the writing on the wall — he recently announced he won’t be running.
The allure of another President Kennedy, almost five years after the assassination of JFK, is just too strong.
Whether Bobby can beat Nixon is another matter. Not everyone approves of his determination to end racial inequality or his constant talk of radical change. In Washington DC, he’s clashed with everyone from the military establishment to the FBI and CIA.
Back on the freeway, Bobby suddenly realises that Frankenheimer is driving too fast. ‘Take it easy, John,’ he says. ‘Life’s too short.’
8.10pm, Los Angeles
Frankenheimer’s Rolls pulls into the Ambassador Hotel car park.
12am, Wednesday, June 5. Ambassador Hotel, LA
‘We want Bobby! We want Bobby!’ The Embassy Room…