Kanye West is running for president and is being accused of working with GOP operatives to help Trump win. While Kanye has talked with zero journalists to explain his platform or plan for America, the rapper turned fashion designer sat down with Nick Cannon to deny being a tool for the Republican agenda.
In an Instagram clip of the interview, Nick Cannon called out legendary R&B singer Stephanie Mills for saying West and himself were “paid slaves” and “little boys in a sandbox with toys.” West responded by saying his name is a “slave name” and “people keep on saying I think that y’all, you and Republicans, are in cahoots… Bro, can’t nobody pay me. I got more money than Trump.”
West also added he’s “not running” for POTUS, he’s “walking.”
See the clip below:
According to the New York Times, one of the operatives is Mark Jacoby who works as an executive at a California-based organization called Let The Voters Decide, which West hired. It has collected signatures for West’s campaigns in Ohio, West Virginia and Arkansas.
Jacoby pled guilty to misdemeanor charges when he was accused of voter fraud in 2008 while working for the California Republican Party. However, the firm he works for now, he says, is nonpartisan.
“We do not comment on any current clients, but like all Americans, anyone who is qualified to stand for election has the right to run,” Jacoby said in a statement.
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West’s campaign reportedly has other links to the GOP as well. According to New York Magazine, another individual, Greg Keller, who once served as executive director of the American Conservative Union was listed as a contact for West’s campaign in Arkansas. He has also worked for other notable Republicans including Sen. Mitt Romney. The Times reported Keller is now a Republican strategist in Missouri and had been considered for a role as President Trump’s campaign manager in 2015.
New York Magazine also reported one of West’s electors in Vermont — where he did file to get on the ballot — Chuck Wilton, who was a Republican delegate at the convention in Charlotte, N.C., for Trump. He was elected to that position in May. He confirmed on the magazine’s website that he was connected to the West campaign.
“Somebody said that Vermont needs electors for certain people and [it was] something I said that I’m more than willing to do,” Wilton said.
Finally, VICE News reported another Republican strategist in Wisconsin is helping West to get on the ballot there. A local news reporter from WISN, Matt Smith, tweeted a video of a woman identified as Lane Ruhland dropping off signatures that would make West qualify to appear on the Wisconsin ballot. Ruhland is a GOP election lawyer and had worked as a legal counsel for the state’s Republican Party, VICE said. She has also represented Trump in a lawsuit to force a Democratic super PAC to pull an anti-Trump ad off the air.
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West has sought ballot eligibility in Oklahoma, West Virginia, Vermont, Missouri, Illinois and Wisconsin, a crucial swing state. Missouri is reportedly challenging the validity of the signatures.
In New Jersey, after facing allegations of fraudulent signatures by New Jersey elections lawyer Scott Salmon, West dropped his petition to get on the ballot there.
The 43-year-old is currently suing Wisconsin and Ohio to appear as a candidate on their November ballots.
Trump’s critics have proposed that West, if successful, could have an impact similar to Green Party candidate Jill Stein in 2016, whose candidacy was said to have taken away votes from Hillary Clinton in 2016, allowing Trump to win the election.
“I don’t think there’s any chance he’s going to win but I think people need to understand the power of a protest vote,” said University of Maryland African American Studies professor Jason Nichols told Fox News. He cited the dislike some voters had for both Clinton and Trump, driving them toward Stein. “I think it could very well happen with Kanye West, which will etch him into the history books, which I think is part of his purpose here.”
West’s running mate is 57-year-old Michelle Tidball. According to Forbes, she lives in Wyoming, describes herself as a “biblical life coach” and in a bible teleconference said that she doesn’t “watch news.”
West, who admittedly has never voted, announced his run for president via Twitter on July 4.