Kanye West Met With Mockery, Political Pushback After Announcing He Is Running For President
Kanye West announced on the Fourth of July that he is running for president, a seemingly serious announcement that has led to some immediate pushback and even mockery for the rapper.
West took to Twitter to make the brief announcement on Saturday evening, offering few details other than his decision to run.
“We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States,” he wrote, adding the hashtag “2020VISION” and an American flag emblem.
The announcement was met with immediate pushback from critics, many of them leaving derisive comments on the rapper’s tweet and accusing him of being selfish with the decision. Many accused West of trying to play spoiler by pulling votes away from Joe Biden and helping Trump to win re-election, assuming that West might be able to pull some African American support from the former vice president.
“It doesn’t matter if he’s having some sort of episode, plugging an album, trying to steal votes from Biden to help Trump win, or serious about becoming president despite having missed many filing deadlines, Kanye West needs to **** all the way off for announcing a POTUS run today,” tweeted political journalist Seth Abramson.
In all seriousness, do not actually vote for Kanye West.
— Gravel Institute (@GravelInstitute) July 5, 2020
As Variety noted, West’s announcement that he was running for president did not come as a complete surprise, as he had been open about presidential ambitions in the past. The report noted that West actually said during a 2015 acceptance speech at the MTV Video Music Awards that he was planning on running for president during this cycle.
“As you probably could have guessed by this moment, in 2020 I have decided to run for president,” he said at the time, before admitting that he had “rolled up a little something” before he came out.
The report added that West had already suggested that he would be voting for Donald Trump, whom he had vocally backed in the past and even visited in the White House. But the report went on to note that West has since shown support for the protests that have arisen in the wake of George Floyd’s killing, which appeared to signal a break from Trump.
It was not clear if West had taken any concrete steps toward running for president, or what platforms he would run on. The rapper has yet to follow up his initial tweet or share any kind of campaign website.