With just one hour and twenty minutes remaining before the state’s deadline, rapper Kanye West filed the paperwork to be a presidential candidate in Ohio, proving that in 2020, anything can happen.
Although he is running as an independent, he previously told Forbes Magazine that he represents the “Birthday Party.”
He listed Wyoming resident and self-described biblical life coach Michelle Tidball as his running mate.
Along with the paperwork, West submitted 14,886 signatures. The Secretary of State’s office requires no fewer than 5,000 and no more than 15,000.
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The Secretary’s office also requires a candidate to name 18 electors who will represent them in the Electoral College, should they win the general election. Of the 18 electors West included, six shared one address in Cleveland. Another four said they all lived at the same address in nearby Lakewood.
Getting on the ballot has been an uphill battle for West. On Tuesday, West withdrew his petition to appear on New Jersey’s ballot after an election lawyer accused his campaign of forging signatures. The Illinois Board of Elections is also examining the legitimacy of signatures West has submitted.
He is being aided in his effort to collect signatures by GOP firm Let the Voters Decide, which is led by executive Mark Jacoby. In 2009, Jacoby was convicted of misdemeanor voter-registration fraud in California after he was accused of switching the listed affiliations of voters to Republican without their permission.
Ohio Secretary of State Frank LaRose informed television station WSYX that West’s petitions will go to the respective county boards of elections to be examined and signatures verified. Those reviews must be completed by Aug. 17, after which LaRose and his staff will review the resulting reports to determine whether West qualifies for the ballot.
West announced he was running for president on July 4, tweeting “We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future.”