Floating Michelle Tidball, an obscure preacher from Cody, Wyoming, as his running mate, popular rapper and music producer Kanye West says God has told him to run for president in 2020 and urged incumbent Donald Trump and his Democratic rival Joe Biden to “gracefully bow out” of the race.
“For the other candidates, I just gracefully suggest y’all bow out — Trump and Biden, gracefully bow out. It’s God’s country, we are doing everything in service to God, nobody but God no more. I am in service of our Lord and savior, Jesus Christ, and I put everything I get on the line to serve God,” West said in an interview with Forbes about his current campaign for the White House billed “Kanye West YES.”
The 43-year-old billionaire, who pledged to evangelize America’s youth with music at Joel Osteen’s Lakewood Church in Houston, Texas, last year, said even though Trump is “the closest president we’ve had in years to allowing God to still be part of the conversation,” he has lost confidence in him and his presidency now “looks like one big mess to me.”
“I don’t like that I caught wind that he hid in the bunker,” West said, referencing reports that Trump was escorted to an underground bunker for his safety in May as protests erupted outside the White House.
He also dismissed Biden for not being “special” and slammed him for telling prominent black New York City radio host Charlamagne Tha God of the popular “The Breakfast Club” on New York City’s Power 105.1, that if he struggled to vote for him over President Donald Trump, he “ain’t black.”
“A lot of times just like political parties they feel all blacks have to be Democrat. This man, Joe Biden, said if you don’t vote for me, then you are not black. Well, act like we didn’t hear that? We act like we didn’t hear that man say that? That man said that. It’s a rap. We gonna walk, all the people. Jay-Z said it best,” West said.
He argued that it takes “special” people like himself to become president and Biden is just not “special.”
“I’m not saying Trump’s in my way, he may be a part of my way. And Joe Biden? Like come on man, please. You know? Obama’s special. Trump’s special. We say Kanye West is special. America needs special people that lead. Bill Clinton? Special. Joe Biden’s not special,” West said.
He insisted that he was not seeking to split the black vote to help reelect Trump. He said if Trump wasn’t seeking reelection, he would have run as a Republican but since he is he will be running as an independent in his Birthday Party with Tidball “because when we win, it’s everybody’s birthday.”
In her bio on her website, Tidball describes herself as a God chasing life coach who formerly worked as a mental health therapist.
“I have various degrees in mental health and criminal justice. I worked as a mental health therapist for ten years and then shifted into life coaching. This seemed a good transition helping people get ‘unstuck’ in their lives using biblical principles and wisdom,” Tidball notes. “I have been involved in almost all aspects of ministry including speaking, pastoring, prayer, teaching, and the most time spent in bringing deliverance to those who are in bondage. My heart has always been to walk in maturity and to bring others into maturity to be about His business and see the completion of things He mandated before the foundations of the world.”
West famously first announced his intention to run for president on Twitter on July 4, declaring: “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.”
In August 2015, while accepting MTV’s Video Vanguard Award, he noted in an 11-minute speech that he would run for president in 2020.
“Yes, as you probably could have guessed by this moment, I have decided in 2020 to run for president,” West said.
While admitting his status as a political novice and his lack of a ready plan for issues like foreign policy, he expressed support for issues like prayer in schools, opposition to abortion and capital punishment, using a Wakanda style (from the movie "Black Panther") of leadership that embraces science and respect for the environment.
“Reinstate in God’s state, in God’s country, the fear and love of God in all schools and organizations and you chill the fear and love of everything else, so that was a plan by the Devil to have our kids committing suicide at an all-time high by removing God to have murders in Chicago at an all-time high because the human beings working for the Devil removed God and prayer from the schools. That means more drugs, more murders, more suicide,” West said.
He urged the nation to pray for racial healing, which he believes God has already started.
“Well, God has already started the healing/This conversation alone is healing and revealing/We all need to start praying and kneeling,” he said.
The rapper described his campaign slogan this way: “When I’m president, let’s also have some fun. Let’s get past all the racism conversation, let’s empower people with 40 acres and a mule, let’s give some land, that’s the plan.”
Thanks to God, he said, his mission is now clear.
“God just gave me the clarity and said it’s time. You know I was out there, ended up in the hospital, people were calling me crazy. I'm not crazy. Between all of the influences and the positions that we can be put in as musicians — you go on tour, you put out all these albums, and you look up and you don’t have any money in your account. It can drive you crazy, through all of that I was looking crazy because it wasn’t the time. Now it’s time. And we’re not going crazy, we’re going Yeezy, it’s a whole ‘notha level now. N-O-T-H-A,” he said.
West expects to make a final decision about running for president in 30 days. If he doesn’t make a decision within that time, he said he would have missed the filing deadline for most states. He still believes that he could use the pandemic as a valid argument to get onto ballots he has already missed.