Hip-hop superstar, fashion designer, Christian resuscitator – Kanye West has had several careers. But can he also be US President? He has at least officially applied for the office. Even if late, you can even say: too late. Because so far he has only made it onto the ballot paper of twelve of the 50 US states. Mathematically, a “Mr. President Kanye West ”is no longer possible. But there are increasing indications that this was never the goal.
Because behind West’s candidacy there could be political calculations by the Republican Party. West is running as an independent candidate – but long-time supporters of Trump’s party are pulling the strings in the background.
It has now been revealed that Kanye West’s campaign team is said to have paid a consulting firm in Arizona nearly $ 1.5 million. CNN reports that while the portfolio of this recently founded company is independent political campaigning, there is a man behind the company with a long history and controversial Republican work.
Kanye West is running in crucial states of all places
His name is Nathan Sproul. He has worked for both Trump’s party and his election campaign. In 2016, his company made $ 1.8 million from the Republicans. And so it doesn’t seem too absurd that his current commitment to Kanye West’s campaign also aims to steal votes from Democratic candidate Joe Biden and thus increase Trump’s chances of re-election.
Because West may not be able to run for elections in many states, but in a striking number of so-called “battleground” states. So US states in which the decision between Trump and Biden is likely to be particularly tight. Minnesota, Iowa, and Colorado are among them, and that’s where Kanye West Name made it onto the ballot papers.
Third party candidates can decide elections
Experts, Democrats and Republicans agree that few voters should actually vote for West, but the Democrats fear that this minority might make the difference.
A US-wide poll by Morning Consult found that only two percent of the polled voters would vote for Kanye West. That may seem like little, but in many states, presidential elections have been decided by fewer voters. In the 2016 election in Wisconsin, Trump and Hillary Clinton separated less than 23,000 votes, while the Libertarian Party candidate got nearly 107,000 votes. And in 2000, Al Gore could have won not just one state but the entire presidential election against Bush if only 0.5 percent of third-party voters in Florida had given him his vote.
Various interfaces between Trump and West
These calculations have a great deal of uncertainty because no one can predict whether voters who want to vote for Kanye West would vote for Joe Biden under different circumstances. Or whether they would cast their vote Trump instead or not at all. Nevertheless, even President Trump believes that Kanye West will successfully steal votes from the core democratic electorate, namely the African-American population, as he announced on Twitter.
And the controversial company that got money from West isn’t the only interface between Trump and the hip-hopper. Another Republican advisor firm, the Atlas Strategy Group, was hired to get him on the ballot. In addition, according to the New York Times, various Republican officials work for West: including Lane Ruhland, a Trump attorney who worked for his campaign team in Wisconsin, Rachel George, a Republican adviser in Colorado, and Gregg Keller, the former director of the American Conservative Union .
West was a big Trump supporter
Officially, however, the Trump team has denied that she was involved in West’s candidacy. And West himself recently said in a podcast: “I’m running for president because I came up with the idea. How it ends now is up to God. “
It is bizarre enough that Kanye West is even going up against Trump: After all, he has always shown himself to be a great Trump supporter in the past. He visited him in the White House, wore a MAGA cap, and spoke out in public for him.
Bizarre election campaign including collapse on stage
And although Kanye West has pumped millions of his own fortune into his election campaign, the design of this campaign causes skepticism even among his fans. He has not presented an official election program, he just presents a few vague ideas on his website, backed up with Bible verses. He spoke out against abortion, but does not want to ban it, but rather regulate it in an “eco-village”, as he shows in a hand-painted drawing on Twitter. West has only had one official campaign appearance so far, during which he burst into tears. He calls his party “Birthday Party”, based on the English word for “party”, which also means “party” or “birthday party”.
Uncertainty factor for the US election
Despite this seemingly absurd election campaign, Kanye West is likely to represent a further source of uncertainty in an already turbulent presidential election.
By the way, Kanye West never said that he wanted to be president in 2020. “The reason I’ll be a great president someday, and sometime may be three months or three and a half years from now, is because I’m sensitive,” West told the New York Times. He seems to see himself as something bigger than just president, more like the savior of the nation, as America’s new political Jesus: “I’m here to serve. I bleed for the country, I don’t just bleed for blacks, I bleed for all of America’s people. I bleed for everyone in the world. ”