Just when you thought 2020 couldn’t get any stranger, rapper Kanye West declared his candidacy for US president on Fourth of July Holiday with a major announcement regarding his plan to run for president this year and he already had an immediate endorsement of support from Elon Musk.
The announcement came days after West, who has taken a very public turn towards Christianity in recent years, released a new song, “Wash Us In the Blood,” along with an accompanying video including imagery from recent anti-racism protests.
Since 2018, his wife, reality star Kim Kardashian, has formed her own contacts with the White House as she champions criminal justice reform: she has successfully lobbied Trump to pardon a sexagenarian woman for a non-violent drug offence.
This is not the first time Kanye has mentioned an interest in the presidential election. In his tweet at the weekend, he stated "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 #2020VISION”.
It isn’t clear if the 43-year-old had filed any official paperwork to appear on state election ballots. The deadline to add independent candidates to the ballot has not yet passed in many states so presumably, he still has time.
Could he actually mount a serious campaign against U.S. President Donald Trump and the Democratic candidate, Joe Biden, in the November election? There has been no immediate response to West’s announcement from either candidate.
Kanye first announced his plan back in 2015 that he would run for president in 2020. Then, he later showed his support for Trump at a White House visit in 2018.
However, by 2019, Kanye had changed his mind and said he was now going to launch a presidential campaign in 2024!
With just four months to go before polling day on 3 November, it was not clear whether West’s tweet would have been more fitting on April Fools’ day than American Independence Day. His tweet is receiving a lot of attention and has already had almost one million likes.
This declaration brings up so many questions: Is he really going to start a campaign? Could Kim K be the first lady? While both of those things are doubtful, it's interesting to imagine a world where Keeping Up with the Kardashians could be filmed in the White House.
If Kanye runs, he would follow in a long tradition of independent or third-party campaigns challenging the Democratic and Republican stranglehold.
So far, we have Trump, Biden, and West. Who's next in the race for the American Presidency?