Saying 11 of Kanye West’s 13 electors were “obtained by improper, fraudulent, or misleading means,” Richmond City Circuit Court Judge Joi Jeter-Taylor ordered West’s name removed from Virginia ballots.
The Thursday decision came days after a group of leading Virginia Democrats and one of West’s electors sued the State Board of Elections. The same day, a judge also removed West from Arizona ballots, according to reporting by the Associated Press.
West could appeal Taylor’s ruling, but Democratic strategist Ben Tribbett told The Virginia Star that the court process would take too long to get West on the 2020 ballot.
“We were already starting to print ballots with his name on it.” Tribbett said larger regions have to start printing their ballots extra early. “Once the ballots are printed it’s very difficult to change them. So, I think this might be the end of the road.”
West has a friendly relationship with President Trump. According to the Associated Press, West is registered as a Republican in Wyoming. In August, West told Forbes that he was running to take votes away from Biden.
“It seems like Republicans think it will benefit them to have West on the ballot,” Tribbett said. He does not think it will work.
“I think that the people who are most likely to vote for him are younger Trump supporters that are more rejective of the system, than progressives who have seen a number of things from him that would indicate that he does not share their beliefs or values at all,” Tribbett said.
However, in part because West is only listed on a few states’ ballots, Tribbett does not think either party should be worried.
“I think [West will] pull more from Trump, but it’s going to be such a minute number, that maybe the only state in my recent memory that could have been affected by him would have been Florida in 2000 …. It would have to be incredibly tight,” Tribbett said. “I don’t think anyone will even remember next year that Kanye West was a candidate.”
The West campaign did not return The Star’s request for comment.
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