Rapper Meek Mill was allegedly talked out of his planned visit to President Donald Trump’s Prison Reform Summit on May 17 by Jay-Z. According to a new report by TMZ, Jay, who’s been pretty outspoken about his disapproval for the current present since he was inaugurated, reportedly convinced him not to attend the event at the White House this week because he didn’t feel that being associated with Trump would help Meek’s career or his cause.
Mill – who was incarcerated for five months before being released earlier this year in April – was originally scheduled to attend the Prison Reform Summit event alongside a slew of attendees, including members of Congress, activists, and others who have been “victims of the system.”
However, the site is alleging that “Jay called Meek Thursday night and made it clear [that] meeting with Trump would be problematic for his image and for the cause.”
Though the outlet didn’t reveal any other names, TMZ also claimed that “other high-profile African-Americans also called Meek and voiced serious concern” about him heading to the White House to meet with the president this week.
Mill spoke out about his decision to pull the plug on his appearance in a statement, where he claimed that he changed his mind about meeting with the president because he felt the focus on him meeting Trump had already overshadowed the main purpose of the event.
“I was originally scheduled to be part of a panel on Prison Reform at the White House to help shed light on the issues within the system,” Mill told the outlet. “Unfortunately, the focus turned to the President and Myself which concerned me that it might take away from creating a positive result from today’s discussions.”
Though he didn’t mention Jay-Z by name, the rapper then continued, “As a result, I decided not to attend so that the focus would be solely on fixing our prison system.”
“Most importantly I remain fully committed to improving our criminal justice system,” Meek then added in the statement.
As reported by New York Daily News, Mill was released from prison three weeks ago after Philadelphia prosecutors asked his drug and gun-related convictions be thrown out “in light of recent developments, namely accusations that his arresting officer lied under oath at his trial a decade ago.”
But while neither Jay-Z nor Meek have confirmed the latest reports suggesting that the “Empire State of Mind” rapper was the driving force behind Mill’s decision to cancel his White House appearance on May 17, Jay has made it clear on more than one occasion that he’s not exactly a Trump supporter.
Per CNN, Jay called out Trump during an appearance on The Van Jones Show in January after the president referred to immigrants coming to the U.S. from what he described as “s***hole countries.”
“Everyone feels anger, but after the anger it’s really hurtful because he’s looking down on a whole population of people and he’s so misinformed because these places have beautiful people,” Jay-Z said when asked about Trump’s controversial words on the talk show at the time.
“Donald Trump is a human being, too,” Beyonce’s husband then continued on the talk show. “Somewhere along his lineage something happened to him… and he’s in pain and he’s expressing it in this sort of way.”
As reported by BET, Meek has also called out Trump and his take on immigration in the past.
In a 2016 seven-minute-long rap on Power 105’s DJ Clue, the rapper said of the president, “Now that Trump won the election they’re gonna try to box us out like the Mexicans.”