Kanye West wants to bring back prayer in schools, give more government support to religious groups and has even asked his campaign staff to refrain from “fornicating” outside of marriage, according to people aiding his candidacy.
Mr. West, the billionaire hip-hop artist and fashion mogul turned Christian revivalist, is not running for president, but “walking,” as he puts it.
He entered the race late and is not going to make the ballot in states including Florida, Texas and Michigan, but he will be on the ballot in others like Colorado, Minnesota and Iowa. Some Democrats fear he could be a spoiler, even if his political appeal is minuscule. Third-party candidacies don’t need that many votes to make an impact, as Jill Stein showed in 2016 and Ralph Nader in 2000.
In calls and texts with The New York Times, and in other recent comments, Mr. West made clear he believes he will become president — eventually — but said almost nothing about what he actually wanted to do if elected.
An inescapable element of Mr. West’s candidacy is his bipolar disorder, which he has spoken about in the past. His wife, Kim Kardashian West, opened up about it for the first time days after Mr. West’s only campaign appearance, in South Carolina, during which he broke down crying. Writing on Instagram, she called him a “brilliant but complicated person” who has to deal with “pressure and isolation that is heightened by his bipolar disorder.”
Because a variety of allies and supporters of President Trump are working on the ground to advance his campaign, many Democrats view his candidacy as a dirty trick by Republicans, a notion Mr. West has rejected.
Still, in a year in which the president is working to undermine confidence in the election, Mr. West’s candidacy is one more point of uncertainty. And many Republicans, including Mr. Trump, appear confident he will siphon votes from Joseph R. Biden Jr., the Democratic nominee, though his appeal could be blunted by some of his conservative positions.
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