Less than two weeks after announcing he was running for president, Kanye West has reportedly dropped out of the race.
The rapper announced his decision to challenge Donald Trump earlier this month, although it wasn’t immediately clear how serious he was about taking over the Oval Office.
In the days that followed though, West revealed a number of details about his campaign – including his stance on a number of controversial issues – leading many to believe he was actually in the running. And it seems he was, at least for a little while.
Steve Kramer, a member of West’s campaign team, told New York Magazine‘s Intelligencer the rapper will no longer run in the election. ‘He’s out,’ Kramer said last Thursday, July 9.
Only hours before Kramer, an election strategist who was reportedly hired by 43-year-old West to help get his name on the ballot in Florida and South Carolina, had described the signature-gathering process as ongoing. ‘We had overwhelming support to get him on the ballot,’ he said at the time.
So what happened? As of yet it’s unclear, although Kramer did say he would ‘let [Intelligencer] know what I know once I get all our stuff cancelled’. The election strategist added there were 180 people working in the ground in Florida when the decision was made to call the effort off.
Sources close to the rapper’s campaign told Intelligencer they had been approached to go to Florida to help collect the 132,781 signatures needed for West to make the state’s ballot by Wednesday’s deadline. Just one day later, Kramer confirmed he was out of the race.
Speaking to the publication last week, Kramer stressed he had ‘nothing good or bad to say about Kanye’, adding: ‘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, stressing the obstacles a first-time candidate faces. ‘Any candidate running for president for the first time goes through these hiccups,’ he said.
Kramer also noted that the staff he had hired for the campaign were disappointed not only because they were now out of a job, but because they had been genuinely excited about what a Kanye West campaign represented.
The news of his withdrawal from the race comes one day after a US presidential poll revealed West had the support of just 2% of voters.
The survey, which polled 2,000 registered voters in the US on July 9 to get an idea of how residents planned to vote in the upcoming November elections, showed Joe Biden coming out on top with 48% while Donald Trump fell to second place at 39%.
West has not publicly commented on whether his run for the presidency is continuing.
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