Kanye West has given the US and the world a glimpse of what President Kanye would be like, in his first interview since suggesting he’ll run for office.
The rapper said he would model his White House operation on Wakanda, the fictional kingdom from Black Panther.
West told Forbes he is “extremely cautious” about a coronavirus vaccine.
He said: “They want to put chips inside of us, they want to do all kinds of things, to make it where we can’t cross the gates of Heaven.”
In what the magazine described as “four rambling hours of interviews”, West said he would decide in the next 30 days whether to definitely stand in November’s presidential election.
If he does, it would be under the banner of The Birthday Party. “Because when we win, it’s everybody’s birthday,” he explained.
But he said he was serious about the plan. “Like anything I’ve ever done in my life, I’m doing to win.”
However, he added: “When I’m president, let’s also have some fun. Let’s get past all the racism conversation, let’s empower people with 40 acres and a mule, let’s give some land, that’s the plan.”
That’s a reference to a 19th Century plan to give freed slaves 40 acres of land after the US Civil War.
What else did he say?
One of President West’s priorities would be to end police brutality, he said, and he is against the death penalty.
He also wants to “clean up the chemicals – in our deodorant, in our toothpaste”. Asked about abortion, he said he is “pro-life because I’m following the word of the Bible”; while he hasn’t developed his foreign policy but is “focused on protecting America, first, with our great military”.
Asked about his approach to taxes, he said he hadn’t done the necessary research yet. “I will research that with the strongest experts that serve God and come back with the best solution. And that will be my answer for anything that I haven’t researched.”
He believes he contracted coronavirus in February, but said a vaccine was “the mark of the beast”.
And he professed his love for China. “It’s not China’s fault that disease. It’s not the Chinese people’s fault. They’re God’s people also. I love China. It changed my life. It changed my perspective, it gave me such a wide perspective.”
But he would take a radical approach to governing. “I don’t know if I would use the word ‘policy’ for the way I would approach things,” he said.
“I [didn’t] have a policy when I went to Nike and designed Yeezy and went to Louis and designed a Louis Vuitton at the same time. It wasn’t a policy, it was a design. We need to innovate the design to be able to free the mind at this time.”
He added: “I’m gonna use the framework of Wakanda right now because it’s the best explanation of what our design group is going to feel like in the White House.”
He likened his approach to the film, “when the king went to visit that lead scientist to have the shoes wrap around her shoes”.
“Just the amount of innovation that can happen, the amount of innovation in medicine – like big pharma – we are going to work, innovate, together.
“This is not going to be some Nipsey Hussle being murdered, they’re doing a documentary, we have so many soldiers that die for our freedom, our freedom of information, that there is a cure for Aids out there, there is going to be a mix of big pharma and holistic.”
His running mate would be Michelle Tidball, who Forbes described as “an obscure preacher from Wyoming”.
What about his support for President Trump?
But he told Forbes he was “taking the red hat off, with this interview”.
He has lost confidence in the president. “It looks like one big mess to me. I don’t like that I caught wind that he hid in the bunker.”
West called on Mr Trump and likely Democratic rival Joe Biden to “gracefully bow out”.
Can he become president?
Forbes noted that West “has no campaign apparatus of any kind”, and that he will miss the deadline for inclusion on the ballot in many states.
But he wants to get the deadline extended because of the coronavirus pandemic. “I’m speaking with experts, I’m going to speak with [Mr Trump’s son-in-law and adviser] Jared Kushner, the White House, with Biden,” West said.
The star, who only registered to vote for the first time on Monday, denied that the possible campaign was a publicity stunt for his new album.
“Let’s see if the appointing is at 2020 or if it’s 2024 – because God appoints the president,” he said. “If I win in 2020 then it was God’s appointment. If I win in 2024 then that was God’s appointment.”
In an interview with RealClearPolitics, Mr Trump said the idea of West running was “interesting”.
“It’d have to be limited to certain states because in some states the deadline has been missed,” he said. “If he did it, he would have to view this as a trial run for what’s going to happen in four years.”