Sunday, July 05, 2020


So this happened last night:
American rapper Kanye West, a vocal supporter of U.S. President Donald Trump, announced on Saturday that he would run for president in 2020 in an apparent challenge to Trump and his presumptive Democratic rival, former Vice President Joe Biden.

He was immediately endorsed by his wife, Kim Kardashian West, and by Elon Musk.

But he's not really running. He's generating publicity at a time when he's announcing a series of new projects.
Kanye West teased a short excerpt from a new song, “Wash Us in the Blood,” on Twitter on Monday. The star also announced that he plans to release a new album titled God’s Country....

While West has been quiet for much of the year, the last few weeks brought a flurry of news. The star just announced a new arrangement with Gap to create a clothing line called Yeezy Gap. West’s deal with the company extends for 10 years with an option to renew after five....

In addition, West announced last week that he will join his longtime collaborator Kid Cudi to voice characters in an animated show inspired by their 2018 album Kids See Ghosts. On top of that, the rapper hopes to release both a James Turrell-directed Jesus Is King film and a version of the album produced by Dr. Dre. Like God’s Country, the various projects do not yet have release dates.
In 2017, I fell for Kid Rock's announcement that he was considering a run for the Senate in Michigan. He was just promoting a new album, as he later acknowledged. I'm not going to fall for this.

I've had this thought:

But if that was the plan, it should have been executed months ago. We're told:
The deadline to add independent candidates to the ballot has not yet passed in many states.
In fact, according to Ballotpedia, the dealine has already passed in New York and Texas, as well as North Carolina, Indiana, Maine, and New Mexico. And the window is closing fast in several other states. To get on the ballot in Florida, West would need to submit 132,781 signatures in the next ten days; the dealine is also July 15 in Oklahoma (35,592 signatures) and Soluth Carolina (10,000 signatures). In Michigan, he'd need to submit 30,000 signatures, "with at least 100 signatures from each of at least half of the state's congressional districts," by July 16. I strongly doubt that West has a campaign ready to collect these signatures, or collect signatures in other states with later deadlines. Even if this is just a stunt, it would be embarrassing for someone as megalomaniacal as West to be on the ballot in only a fraction of the country.

Here's another theory, possibly far-fetched: The Trump campaign urged West to do this not in the belief that he'll actually run, but in the hope that there'll be a poll or two with West included in the candidate field in which Biden's lead shrinks as a result. (Third-party candidates generally poll better several months before a presidential election than they do on Election Day.) If no outside polling firm will conduct a Biden-Trump-West poll, the Trump campaign can conduct its own, or maybe urge Rasmussen or Zogby to do it. A poll like that would be a small, momentary embarrassment to Biden, and would also cheer Trump up. (We all know what a bad mood Trump has been in lately.)

We can't rule out the possibility that one bad three-way poll could lead to a dozen op-eds and think pieces arguing that Biden needs to do more to close the sale with young and non-white voters. If this is a Trump campaign scheme, it might work for a few news cycles.

But trust me, Kanye West isn't running. He clearly has too many other projects to promote. This is obviously part of the promotion.

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