In the final hours of the United States Senate race in Georgia, rapper Kanye West endorsed the Republican candidate in an Instagram post on Tuesday evening.
"Vote.gop or TeamHerschel.com/VOTE," the disgraced rapper wrote, promoting Republican candidate Herschel Walker, who is backed by former president Donald Trump.
Tuesday's race is the second time in less than two years that a US Senate race in Georgia will go to a runoff. The race is between Walker and incumbent Democrat Sen. Raphael Warnock. The Senate majority was decided in last month's midterm elections when Democrats flipped an open seat in Pennsylvania that was previously held by a Republican. Still, both parties are saying every seat matters.
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West, who has legally changed his name to Ye, recently had his Twitter account restored after being blocked over a series of antisemitic comments, including a threat to go “death con 3” on the Jews, that cost him a slew of lucrative sponsorship deals. Last week, he told right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones that he likes Hitler, adding: “I love Jewish people, but I also love Nazis.”
Kanye's ties to the Republican Party
The entertainer has long promoted Trump and the Republican Party. Last month, some of the ex-president's former supporters said a "breaking point" was the dinner Trump hosted at Mar-a-Lago for the notorious antisemite and white supremacist Nick Fuentes.
Republican leaders, meanwhile, do not return Ye's fondness.
New York Councilwoman Inna Vernikov, a Jewish pro-Trump Republican who represents Brooklyn's District 48, told The Jerusalem Post on Sunday that the former chief executive's recent actions in meeting with Kanye put the GOP's integrity to the test.
“When he spends time with individuals who openly support Hitler, our party’s integrity, morals and leadership are put to the test," she said. "Who will do what’s politically expedient and stay silent, and who will do what is right despite political backlash? Republican leadership must do what is right: Condemn his actions and publicly call on him to apologize and disassociate himself."
Who is getting the Jewish vote in Georgia?
“There could not be a more acute distinction between two candidates than there is between Sen. Warnock, who shares our values and our commitment to democracy and support of Israel, and Herschel Walker, who is a pathological liar and a hypocrite who believes in election denialism and supports an abortion ban."JDCAs Haie Soifer
The Jewish Democratic Council of America (JDCA) political action committee earlier this month threw its support behind Warnock, pledging to spend $250,000 on two new pro-Warnock ads targeting Jewish voters in Georgia.
“The 51st Senate seat matters,” JDCA CEO Halie Soifer said. “The past two years have demonstrated that having a 50-50 seat majority is simply not enough to pass legislation and continue to make progress. Democrats need that 51st seat to ensure we can continue to move forward, delivering for the American people.
“There could not be a more acute distinction between two candidates than there is between Sen. Warnock, who shares our values and our commitment to democracy and support of Israel, and Herschel Walker, who is a pathological liar and a hypocrite who believes in election denialism and supports an abortion ban,” she said.
Haley Cohen and Omri Nahmias contributed to this report.