While it might be impossible for Kanye West to put all of his money where his mouth is, he certainly made a mighty effort for his quixotic 2020 presidential campaign. A review of Kanye’s last Federal Election Commission financial summary by The Hollywood Reporter reveals that the rapper and fashion mogul spent $13.2 million on his four-month run—with nearly $12.5 of that coming out of his own pocket.
That could be small change considering that he was officially declared a billionaire last year. Or it could be a ridiculous waste if you reflect on the fact that, barely a month into the campaign, he declined to deny that his campaign was designed to siphon votes away from Joe Biden, who ended up winning handily, and that he ended up on the ballot in just 12 states. Regardless, West believed in the show—and threw money at it—until the bitter end.
Just a week before the election, West spent $210,544 to run a two-page ad in the New York Times. Kanye’s pricey last minute pitch took the form of a poem/letter entitled “Dear Future” which espoused his “Birthday Party” campaign’s central themes of populism and (pro-life) Christianity with lines like, “When I close my eyes, I see our God providing us/ with a bright future./ I feel like a kid the night before/ Christmas when I think about our future.”
Less old-timey religious was Kanye’s Election Day campaign apparel which, according to the FEC filing, cost him $918,130.
Despite spending $7.5 million to get his name on ballots, raising $2 million in outside donations, and a will-they-or-won’t-they endorsement courtship with fellow billionaire weirdo Elon Musk, West only managed to pull about 66,000 votes for his time and money.
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