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The politics of political clowning for White folks

Practical Politics

David L. Horne, PH.D. | 8/27/2020, midnight

As is known by some folks, rapper Kanye West has recently mounted a bid to run for the POTUS in 2020. Rather, the Republican Party has mounted and managed Kanye’s last-minute, poorly organized disruptive campaign for the presidency.

Kanye is not even trying to actually win—in fact, it is impossible for him to do so. He has not legally registered in enough states whose electoral vote numbers equal or surpass the required 270, and even though he might still gain ballot admission in six or seven other states before it’s too late, that 270 fact won’t change. In fact, thus far, as of August, 2020 (he formally started his campaign in July, 2020) he has only been registered for the ballot in four states: Vermont, Oklahoma, Colorado and Louisiana. Because of inadequate signatures, poorly filled out candidate papers, or other problems, he has been rejected in at least 10 more states, and he formally missed the deadline to even try in California, Michigan, Indiana, New Mexico, Maine, Nevada, Texas, New York, and North and South Carolina (states with high electoral vote numbers).

What Kanye is trying to do is carry water for the Trump campaign, as a continuation of the attempt he and Candace Owens launched in 2019 to lure significant numbers of Black folk from the Democratic Party into the arms of the Republican Party.

Without significant and effective help from the Russians, and any other available exemplar of skullduggery, Mr. Trump is almost certain to lose, and lose by a lot, in the November 3rd election. Enter Kanye, who will certainly not speak at the current, virtual Republican National Convention in favor of Mr. Trump because of the need to at least pretend that he is not just a mere Republican Party shill for its candidate. Actually, it would be illegal for Mr. West to claim candidature through his Birthday Political Party and maintain tangible ties with the Trump campaign. But illegality has not been a bar to previous Trump campaign activities, so why should this be any different?

Yet for anyone even vaguely looking, the fact that virtually all attempts at gaining entry to the necessary state ballots have been carried out for Mr. West by employees of the Trump campaign is clear as day.

But if Kanye is not seriously trying to win, then what the hell is he really doing in this race anyway?

The answer is simple. Mr. Trump is scratching for handfuls of votes in particular states—not the large, thunderous millions necessary in the popular vote. Remember, he became POTUS by winning the 2016 campaign by approximately 77,000 votes in a combined three states—Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin, after losing the popular vote to Hilary Clinton by nearly 3 million votes. Winning re-election by a millimeter instead of a mile is fine by him. Just winning by any amount will do, and he can lie about the size of the victory the way he did in 2016-2017.

Kanye being on the ticket in several states can possibly siphon off enough votes from young, urban Black voters and a few whites, to carry the day. The hustle is obvious.

What is far less understandable is why any sensible Black person—including Kanye—would allow himself/herself to be punked that way. Now is the time for “woke” Black activists to rant and blast this callous attempt at disrespect and disregard. We’ve all come way too far to be taken down this easily.

Do not go gently into the mist and smoke of such a low-life con, Black folk. If they are coming for you (and your votes), at least make them bring a real complicated grift, not just an okeydoke.

Send Kanye back to rehab, and Trump with him!

Professor David L. Horne is founder and executive director of PAPPEI, the Pan African Public Policy and Ethical Institute, which is a new 501(c)(3) pending community-based organization or non-governmental organization (NGO). It is the stepparent organization for the California Black Think Tank which still operates and which meets every fourth Friday.

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