Kanye West broke down in tears during a wild rally to launch his presidential campaign, revealing that Kim Kardashian wanted to have an abortion but that God came to him and told him it was not right.
Two weeks after announcing his unlikely bid for president, Kanye West held his first campaign event in South Carolina on Sunday, wearing a bullet-proof vest and with 2020 shaved into his hair.
‘I don’t give a f*** if I win the presidency or not,’ he declared.
‘There are homeless people in front of the Gucci store. I care about these things. And I am in service of God.’
He said he wished to meet with George Soros to discuss building houses, and with Mark Zuckerberg to talk about improving internet connectivity in Africa. He drew condemnation, however, for saying that Harriet Tubman ‘just had the slaves go work for other white people’.
Kanye West breaks down in tears on stage in South Carolina on Sunday
Kanye West is seen with wife Kim Kardashian and their children North, Saint, Chicago, and Psalm, in a photo posted on Father’s Day – June 21, 2020
The 43-year-old rapper’s rally was held at the Exquis Event Center in North Charleston for registered guests only, according to a campaign document obtained by Politico.
Amid the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, all attendees were told they would be required to wear masks, sign a COVID-19 liability release form and practice social distancing.
The face mask rule was not universally enforced, however, with attendees climbing onto the stage to question West without face masks.
‘Politics, America, Trump, Biden, nor Kanye West can free us,’ he told the crowd.
‘The only thing that can free us is obeying the rules that were given to us as a promised land.’
Recent reports claim that West’s bipolar disorder has ‘impacted his decision-making’ and has left his family ‘very concerned.’
A source told TMZ that the rapper is in the midst of a manic episode caused by bipolar disorder – a condition that he has been open about in the past.
In 2016 West spent time in hospital after a ‘psychiatric emergency’ and was forced to cancel 21 concert dates.
On Sunday night he told a story about his wife Kim Kardashian West’s pregnancy.
Kardashian West, 39, gave birth to their first child together, North, on June 15, 2013.
She also shares sons Saint, 4, Psalm, 1, and two-year-old daughter Chicago with the musician.
‘And let me go to Planned Parenthood,’ he said, beginning the story.
‘My girlfriend called me screaming, crying. I’m a rapper. And she said I’m pregnant. She was crying.’
West said he was weighing up what to do, when he received what he interpreted as a sign from God.
He told that he was in Paris, working on his laptop at the time.
‘My screen went black and white,’ he said. ‘And God said, if you f*** with my vision I f*** with yours.
‘And I called my girlfriend and said we’re going to have this child.
‘Even if my wife were to divorce me after this speech, she brought North into this world, when I did not want to.’
He yelled to the crowd: ‘She had the pills in her hand.’
He shouted: ‘I almost killed my daughter!’
West, 43, addressed the crowds at the registration-only rally in South Carolina
Attendees at the rally wore face masks, but removed them to go on stage and question West
West, growing emotional, then told the story of his own childhood.
‘My Mum saved my life. My Dad wanted to abort me,’ he said. ‘There would have been no Kanye West. Because my Dad was too busy.’
West spent much of the time discussing abortion, and announced that he wanted women to be given money by the government for bearing children, to discourage abortion.
‘Abortion should be legal but the option of maximum increase should be available,’ he said.
‘Everybody who has a baby gets a million dollars or something.’
He pointed out that Steve Jobs was adopted, and said it ‘takes a village’ to raise a child, emphasizing that he wanted all mothers to be free from worries about child care.
‘Steve Jobs was adopted,’ he said.
‘It takes a village to raise a child. No matter how much money you have. Society is set up for single women to not have a village.
‘So I moved to a small town, in Cody, Wyoming.’
West told the crowd of perhaps a hundred people that he wanted to illustrate his point about abortion with diagrams, but changed his mind after a social media backlash.
He had tweeted an image of a six-month fetus on July 8, and then deleted it.
‘I even heard they could abort up to eight months,’ he said.
Kanye West took to Twitter to declare that six month fetuses are ‘souls’ that ‘deserve to live’ in a now deleted tweet that built on the pro-life platform he announced in his Forbes interview
‘I wanted to show everyone what a six month old baby, that is legal to abort in New York looks like.’
West incorrectly described the law in New York.
The New York law allows for women after 24 weeks of pregnancy to get an abortion if ‘there is an absence of fetal viability, or the abortion is necessary to protect the patient’s life or health.’
West continued: ‘Then I got social media backlash.
‘I tell you what, I backstroke the backlash.
‘When the baby is conceived, at that point it is a soul – a real living thing.’
West demanded ‘absolute silence and absolute order’ — and even asked audience members to point out anyone they heard talking — scolded the crowd for clapping at one point, and had another audience member ejected for an unclear reason.
He got into a heated exchange with a young woman named Georgia who he invited onto the stage to speak – although her comments were mostly inaudible.
He said that he was concerned about gun violence, but supported gun ownership. He referenced his ranch in Wyoming
‘When other countries come in, and you have no weapons, what do you think will happen?’ he asked.
‘Guns don’t kill people; people kill people.’
West also discussed racism in the United States, proclaiming that he wanted to be on the board of both Adidas and Gap – for whom he designs clothes.
He referenced his own wealth several times, noting, to laughter: ‘as I said to a fellow billionaire…’, and then trailing off.
West said that, all too often, black culture was exploited by white-owned companies.
‘I am sick of this black iconography being used by white corporations, for us to look up to and say this is us,’ he said.
The 43-year-old rapper previously supported Donald Trump, but is now challenging him
He drew stares of disapproval when he attacked Harriet Tubman, the anti-slavery activist who died in 1913, having escaped from slavery and subsequently made some 13 missions to rescue approximately 70 enslaved people.
‘Harriet Tubman never actually freed the slaves, she just had the slaves go work for other white people,’ he said.
One person was heard saying: ‘Yo, we’re leaving right now,’ while another crowd member groaned: ‘Come on, man.’
West urged his 29.8 million followers to help him acquire signatures to get on the state’s ballot
On Saturday evening, West, a former supporter of President Donald Trump, urged his 29.8 million Twitter followers to help him acquire signatures to get on South Carolina’s ballot.
‘Hi guys please sign up to put me on the ballot in South Carolina at any of these locations,’ he wrote, listing eight venues. ‘You can also sign up at the website.’
West was able to get on the ballot in Oklahoma this week by paying a $35,000 fee before the cut-off deadline in lieu of getting petition signatures.
The deadlines to register as a write-in candidate have passed in several states, but many extend into August and September, leaving a small chance that West could muster enough petition signatures to get him on the ballots in those states.
Several thousands of signatures are required for a write-in candidate in most states.
The father-of-four’s rally comes just days after reportedly dropping out of the 2020 presidential election.
Last week West, 43, posted a video of himself registering to vote in Wyoming
Steve Kramer, an election strategist hired by West to focus on getting his name on the ballot in Florida and South Carolina, told Intelligencer, on Thursday, ‘He’s out’.
At the time, Kramer maintained that West’s bid was always serious and there were 180 people working in the ground in Florida when the decision was made to call the effort off.
‘I’ll let you know what I know once I get all our stuff canceled. We had over 180 people out there today,’ he initially told the outlet, when the Florida campaign appeared to have come to an end.
‘I have nothing good or bad to say about Kanye,’ he later added.
‘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.’
West revealed on Independence Day that he was running for president as an independent
Campaign professionals told the Intelligencer that West had started attempts to get his named on the ballot as a third-party candidate last week to mount a challenge to Trump and his Democratic rival Joe Biden.
One source said they had been approached to go to Florida to collect the signatures needed to make the ballot in the state by Wednesday’s deadline.
To appear on the ballot in the Sunshine State in November, West would have needed 132,781 signatures by July 15.
Kramer also added that he believed West’s campaign team were ‘working over weekend there, formalizing the FEC and other things that they’ve got to do when you have a lot of corporate lawyers involved’.
He said they had ‘overwhelming support to get him on the ballot’ and that ‘whether anybody is going to vote for him or not is up to them’.
‘Any candidate running for president for the first time goes through these hiccups,’ Kramer said.
He later told the Intelligencer that the staff were told the drive to get on the ballot was over, on the same day that West tweeted a pictured of himself registering to vote in Wyoming.
West, pictured above with President Trump in 2016, announced his bid on July 4
‘I want to show you how I just registered to vote,’ West had said.
West announced he is running for president of the United States, just four months before election day, on July 4.
The 21-time Grammy winner celebrated Independence Day by revealing his plans on Twitter, tweeting: ‘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.’
The rapper, pictured in the Oval Office, had previously voiced his support for Trump but pulled it back as he announced his intentions to run, saying he lost confidence in the president
The performer has sparked speculation over the years that he would potentially enter the presidential race one day, most recently in November, when he said he planned to run in 2024.
In his Twitter announcement, West revealed little of his plans, but later spoke about his platform in an interview with Forbes.
In his Forbes interview, West first seemed to say that he hadn’t yet decided whether he would run as an independent candidate, but was giving himself the next 30 days to decide what to do, even though he’d have missed filing deadlines for several state ballots by that time.
West-Tidball 2020! In an interview with Forbes about his presidential run, Kanye West named Michelle Tidball (pictired right) as his running mate ahead of the 2020 election
West said that he believed he could use coronavirus as a reason for being placed on those ballots.
West said that he had decided to run and that his party would be called the ‘Birthday Party’ because ‘when we win, it’s everybody’s birthday’.
West has previously publicly supported Trump, wearing MAGA hats and even going to the White House to meet with him, despite admitting that he’s never voted in a presidential election in his life.
West told Forbes that he has since lost confidence in Trump and that ‘it looks like one big mess to me.’
He named Michelle Tidball, 57, as his running mate ahead of the 2020 election.
Tidball hails from Cody, Wyoming – the same town where West owns a $14 million ranch – but she has scrubbed clean her web presence in recent days.
Billionaire Elon Musk said West has his ‘full support’ when the rapper announced his run
Musk and West have a documented friendship, with the rapper tweeting out an image of them together just days before. Musk has since said he believes West should run in 2020
However, internet archives reveal a glimpse into the mind of the elusive ‘Biblical life coach’, who reportedly ran the website Yarash.org.
The site is currently ‘under construction’, but TMZ accessed one archived page featuring a biography of Tidball, which describes her journey to religious enlightenment.
Tidball was reportedly visited by God when she was just six months old and on the brink of death.
Among other things, the famed rapper said in the Forbes interview he believes vaccines are ‘the mark of the beast’ and that ‘Planned Parenthoods have been placed inside cities by white supremacists to do the Devil’s work’.
He later posted and deleted a pro-life tweet saying calling six-month fetuses ‘souls’ that ‘deserve to live’.
West said that his wife, Kim Kardashian, and Tesla founder Elon Musk were his advisors at the moment and that he had suggested Musk could be ‘the head of our space program’.
Wife Kim Kardashian had little to say immediately after the announcement on July 4, but showed her support by tweeting an American Flag emoji in response
While there is no official deadline to enter the U.S. presidential race, candidates must meet certain filing requirements under Ballot Access Laws that vary by state.
The deadline to add independent candidates to the ballot had not yet passed in many states, including California, when West announced but were fast approaching.
He had already missed deadlines to add his name to the presidential ballot in six states by July 4.
Of the 538 Electoral College votes total, West has already missed out on 102 of those votes if he were to successfully make his way onto the ballot in other states – as the registration date has passed for North Carolina, Texas, New York, Maine, New Mexico and Indiana.
Long shot: The late registration – also the name of West’s 2005 album – would prevent him from standing any real chance against Trump and Joe Biden
Colorado, Florida, Michigan, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina and West Virginia all have July deadlines also.
He could, however, have run in these states as a write-in candidate. Although, rules for this type of candidacy vary from state to state and in many states do not count or are tallied as part of the ‘other’ category.
The late registration – also the name of West’s 2005 album – would prevent him from standing any real chance against Trump and presumed Democratic candidate Biden.
West’s announcement was met with with mixed reactions of skepticism and excitement, as online bookmakers cut his odds of winning the election from 500/1 to 50/1.
A recent national poll showed West taking voters away from President Donald Trump
A national poll released on Tuesday revealed that West was polling at two per cent and that his inclusion hurt Trump’s number more than they did Biden’s.
According to The Hill, respondents of the poll were first asked who they would vote for in November, without mentioning West’s name.
Biden won out with 48 per cent to Trump’s 40 per cent.
When West was included in the options, Biden’s tally remained at 48 per cent but Trump dropped to 39 per cent.