Strangely, 2016 presidential election results from several states show why Republicans are backing Kayne West’s (?-California) insane presidential campaign.
NPR alleges Republicans have helped West get on the ballot in several states including Wisconsin. In fact, NPR claims Lane Ruhland; a former legal counsel for the Wisconsin Republican Party, was seen dropping off signatures for West at a Wisconsin state office.
Ordinary people will wonder why Republicans are helping an allegedly mentally-ill rapper and reality TV star’s presidential campaign. Bizarrely, the answer involves former New Mexico Governor Gary Johnson, the 2016 Libertarian presidential candidate.
How the Libertarian Party Explains Republican “Support” for Kayne West
To elaborate Johnson received 3.6% of the Wisconsin vote in the 2016 presidential election.
Donald J. Trump Sr. (R-New York) won Wisconsin with just 0.7% of the vote. To elaborate, The New York Times estimates Trump beat Hillary R. Clinton (R-New York) 47.2% to 46.5%.
Hence, Johnson received enough votes to help Trump carry Wisconsin. Many observes consider Wisconsin one of the swing states that put Trump in the White House.
Similarly Johnson won 2.7% of the 2016 presidential vote in North Carolina. Trump carried North Carolina by 3.6% or 49.8% to 46.2%, The New York Times estimates.
Moreover, Johnson won 4.1% of the 2016 presidential vote in Arizona. Trump carried Arizona with 3.5% of the vote or 48.1% to 44.6%.
Thus, you can argue that Gary Johnson, not Vladimir Putin, put Donald J. Trump (R-Florida) in the White House.
Republicans Want to Repeat 2016
I think Republicans want to repeat 2016 by having another candidate on the ballot who can take votes from Joe Biden (D-Delaware) in as many states as possible.
In particular, Republicans hope West will appeal to voters who hate Trump but dislike Joe Biden. For example, cultural conservatives who find Trump vulgar; and nonwhite voters who distrust Biden, but don’t want to vote for a racist.
In addition, Republicans could hope West will appeal to leftists who believe the Democratic establishment cheated their hero U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) out of the presidential nomination. Thus, Republicans believe Sanders Voters Tipped the Election to Trump.
Political science professor Brian Schaffner believes frustrated Sanders’ supports enabled Trump to carry the swing states of Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, and Michigan. To explain, the angry Bernie fans voted for Trump, or third party candidates.
Lincoln Republicans for Kanye West
Thus, many of Johnson’s 2016 voters were Bernie fans trying to send a message to the Democratic establishment. Republicans could hope West could fill Johnson’s shoes in 2020.
To elaborate, the Republicans think Bernie fans will not vote for Trump but they could vote for an obvious clown who cannot win; such as West. In 2016, many voters; including me, viewed Trump as “an incompetent clown who could not win.” We were wrong.
Thus, I think West’s vote will be smaller than Johnson’s; but Kanye could attract just enough votes to put Trump over the hump. In particular, West could appeal to so-called Lincoln Republicans who despise Trump but fear Democrats.
I consider the Lincoln Republicans a big problem for Trump because they are actively campaigning against the President. In fact, Open Secrets claims the Lincoln Project raised $16.8 million to finance anti-Trump propaganda between April and July 2020. Open Secrets also claims Democratic billionaires David Geffen and Amos Hostetter are among the Lincoln Projects donors.
If the Lincoln Republicans can convince just 2% to 5% of conservative voters to turn on Trump, I think they could cost the President the election. One way for Republicans to counter the Lincoln Project is to put Kanye West’s name on the ballot.
Is Kanye West Crazy or just Helping Trump?
In fact, the cynic in me wonders if the whole Kanye West run is an effort to screw the the Lincoln Republicans. I also wonder if West himself is in on the scam.
West has publicly supported Trump and visited the Donald at the White House in the past. In addition, The New York Post alleges West had a secret meeting with first daughter Ivanka Trump and her husband and presidential adviser Jared Kushner in Colorado in August.
Thus the whole Kanye West campaign could be a work, or fraud, designed to help Trump. In conclusion, I think West’s campaign shows that desperate Republicans think Trump will lose so they are willing to take any step to help the president.
Therefore, it could be the Grand Old Party (GOP) and our whole political system; and not Kanye West, that are truly insane.