It appears that Kanye West actually made a bit of an effort to run for president, but it reportedly won’t be happening this year.
Intelligencer reports that according to multiple campaign professionals, Kanye began the process of having his name included on the ballots for Florida and other states as a third-party candidate, in opposition to Joe Biden and Donald Trump.
A source told the outlet that they had been contacted by Kanye’s team about going to Florida to get the necessary signatures so that he could make it on the state’s ballot by the July 15 deadline. In order to meet the ballot requirements, 132,781 Florida voters would have to sign the petition in less than a week.
On July 9, Intelligencer spoke with Steve Kramer—a “get-out-the-vote” specialist who manages a firm that assists candidates in making the ballot—who said that Kanye’s team had hired him to get the rapper on the ballots in Florida and South Carolina. He said that Ye’s team was “working over [the] weekend there, formalizing the FEC and other things that they’ve got to do when you have a lot of corporate lawyers involved.”
Kramer said the team—made of paid and volunteer workers—was continuing to gather signatures, and that “we had overwhelming support to get him on the ballot.” He added, “Whether anybody is going to vote for him or not is up to them.”
That same day, the outlet tried to get a response from Kanye’s publicist regarding his steps to be added to the ballot, but to no avail. Later, Kramer told Intelligencer, “He’s out.” When asked what happened, Kramer said, “I’ll let you know what I know once I get all our stuff canceled. We had over 180 people out there today.”
Around an hour after the publication spoke with Kramer, Kanye shared a video on Twitter of him registering to vote for the first time at the county clerk’s office in Cody, Wyoming, where his ranch is located. In the clip, the rapper says, “I want to show you how I just registered to vote.” Text also appears that reads, “I thank God and I am so humbled at the opportunity to serve. Vote.” West is then seen filling out a registration form and talking to a local official about felon disenfranchisement.
— ye (@kanyewest) July 9, 2020
“I have nothing good or bad to say about Kanye,” Kramer later told the outlet. “Everyone has their personal decision about why they make decisions. Running for president has to be one of the hardest things for someone to actually contemplate at that level.” He added that “any candidate running for president for the first time goes through these hiccups.”
Kramer also said that his newly-hired staff was both saddened that they were no longer employed and because they were looking forward to Kanye’s campaign.