Kanye West meets Trump in Oval Office
Kanye West met with President Donald Trump at the White House on Thursday, and the meeting turned into the kind of long-winded, high-profile rant that West has become infamous for. At one point he even rushed over to hug the president.
Wearing a red Make America Great Again hat, the Grammy-winning rapper held court with the president, who was sitting on the other side of his executive desk in the Oval Office.
During the surreal sit-down in a room full of reporters — which was arranged to discuss manufacturing, prison reform, gang-violence prevention and efforts to reduce violence in West’s hometown of Chicago — the entertainer stayed on brand if not on topic.
He praised the president, telling him he looked to him as a father figure, and repeatedly said, “I love this guy,” before embracing Trump.
Wearing the MAGA hat, West said, makes him “feel like Superman.” He told the president he redesigned his hat and removed “Again” from the slogan. He hoped that one day both Trump and outspoken former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick could wear the reconfigured hat in solidarity.
West touched on his recent bipolar “misdiagnosis” and his deal with Adidas and told the president he grew up in a home — and married into a family — without a lot of “male energy.” He likened the bipartisan rivalries between Democrats and Republicans to being “like a gang again.”
West said he doesn’t “answer questions in simple sound bites. You are tasting a fine wine. It has multiple notes to it.”
West encouraged Trump to abolish the slavery-ending 13th Amendment, which he called “a trap door” for beleaguered African-Americans that sends them back to prison. He urged Trump to bring jobs to America and improve transitional services for ex-cons.
“I tell you what, that was pretty impressive,” Trump said of West’s presentation.
The meetup came on the heels of West supporting Trump in a post-show rant on “Saturday Night Live.”
In May, West’s wife, reality TV star Kim Kardashian, met with Trump to successfully secure a presidential pardon for Alice Marie Johnson, serving a life sentence on nonviolent drug charges.
U.S. President Donald Trump, left, hosts a working lunch with musical artist Kanye West to discuss criminal justice system and prison reform on Thursday in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, D.C.