As recently as early October, Republicans seemed eager to gamble on Kanye West. As the GOP saw it, the disturbed entertainer, who uses the Ye pseudonym, could be a politically powerful ally, thanks in part to the fact that he — unlike most prominent voices on the right — is a culturally relevant Black celebrity who was willing to wear MAGA caps.
It led Republicans such as Rep. Paul Gosar of Arizona to publish a tweet on Oct. 7 that read, “Pray for Kanye West. They will throw everything they have at him simply for speaking the truth.” The same day, West was treated to a flattering interview with Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, whose program took the liberty of editing out the guest’s antisemitic rhetoric. Four days later, West was touted by Republican Sen.-elect Eric Schmitt of Missouri via Twitter (he soon after deleted the tweet). The same week, Todd Rokita, the Republican attorney general of Indiana, celebrated West’s “independent thinking.”
But it was Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee, led by Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio, who helped get the ball rolling on Oct. 6 with a simple, three-word tweet: “Kanye. Elon. Trump.”
It was as concise as it was direct: Americans looking to better understand what the contemporary GOP is all about should look no further than these three men: a corrupt, failed former president, a red-pilled billionaire going through a midlife crisis, and one of the nation’s most prominent antisemitic bigots.
In the weeks that followed, every time West, Elon Musk, Donald Trump, or some combination of the trio would become embroiled in a new scandal, some in the political world would check to see if the Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee had deleted their notorious tweet. It nevertheless remained up.
That is, until yesterday. NBC News reported:
Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee deleted their Oct. 6 tweet that appeared to support Ye, formerly known as Kanye West, after months of controversy over his antisemitic remarks. “Kanye. Elon. Trump,” read the tweet, which held up Ye alongside Elon Musk, the new owner of Twitter, who has been bringing back right-wing figures who were once banned, and former President Donald Trump.
There’s no great mystery as to what led Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee to finally scrap their missive. West appeared on conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ program yesterday, praising Adolf Hitler and professing his love of Nazis.
When the host tried to criticize Nazis as “thugs” who “did a lot of very bad things,” West responded, “But they did good things, too. We’ve got to stop dissing the Nazis all of the time.” He went to declare, “What I’m going to say is the Jewish media has made us feel like the Nazis and Hitler have never offered anything of value to the world.”
Hours later, West — whose Twitter account was recently reactivated by Musk — published an image appearing to show a swastika inside a Star of David. It was soon after blocked by Twitter as a violation of its rules.
It was around this time when the House Judiciary Committee’s GOP members apparently decided to cut its losses. These Republicans seemed willing to tolerate some of West’s antisemitism — yesterday’s garbage was hardly a surprise — but public praise for Hitler was apparently a bit too much for the party.
It was not too much for Trump, who did not respond to this latest controversy, despite welcoming West to Mar-a-Lago for dinner last week.