Politics

Ye Brought Extremist Leader to Meet With Donald Trump at Mar-a-Lago

Kanye West, now known as Ye, performs in Washington, D.C., on November 21, 2013, on his Yeezus Tour.
Kanye West, now known as Ye, performs in Washington, D.C., on November 21, 2013, on his Yeezus Tour. Photo by Peter Hutchins
The rapper formerly known as Kanye West is singing the praises of extremist leader Nick Fuentes and touting his role in bringing Fuentes to meet Donald Trump in Palm Beach early this week.

West, who now goes by Ye, met with the former president at Mar-a-Lago on November 22, though initial media reports left it unclear how much contact Trump had with Fuentes, a prominent Christian nationalist and white supremacist.

In a video Ye released late Thanksgiving evening, the rapper says Fuentes was at the meeting as well, and that Trump took a liking to him.

"Trump is very impressed with Nick Fuentes. And Nick Fuentes — unlike so many of the lawyers and so many people that [Trump] was left with on his 2020 campaign — he's actually a loyalist," Ye says in the video.

Trump reportedly said in a statement published by Axios that he and Ye were supposed to be eating dinner à deux.

"Kanye West very much wanted to visit Mar-a-Lago. Our dinner meeting was intended to be Kanye and me only, but he arrived with a guest whom I had never met and knew nothing about," the statement reads.

Fuentes is the host of the America First podcast, in which he espouses racist, anti-Semitic, and misogynistic views.

After the midterm elections, Fuentes criticized homosexuality and "sex out of wedlock," while calling for a dictatorship to overthrow the US government.

"It sucks, and it is what it is, but that’s why we need a dictatorship. That’s unironically why we need to get rid of all that," Fuentes says in a video clip. "We need to take control of the media or take control of the government and force the people to believe what we believe, or force them to play by our rules and reshape the society."

Other notable commentary from Fuentes:
  • In a video highlighted by Right Wing Watch in July 2022, Fuentes complained about efforts to eliminate racial prejudice in the United States.

    "That's the real red pill. That's the real task at hand... We are called as members of Generation Z to rediscover the lost prejudice and racism of our grandparents," Fuentes said.

  • In June 2022, Fuentes made a series of incendiary comments in response to the verdict in the Amber Heard and Johnny Depp slander trial.

    "We need to go back to burning women alive more," Fuentes said. "Like when they are convicted of crimes obviously, not random acts of violence... Remember that in medieval times, when women were witches, what happened to them? They were burned alive. Real phenomenon. And we stopped doing that and everything went out of control."

  • Fuentes has supported the January 6, 2021 Capitol Hill riot and called for the day to be celebrated.

    A vocal promoter of election fraud theories in the time leading up to the riot, Fuentes traveled around the U.S. in late 2020 and used religious fundamentalism to incite outrage. His speeches referred to a conspiracy by which he claimed Satan-serving elites were plotting against the American people.

    "It is about globalists and the American people, but more than that, it is about the forces of evil versus the people of Jesus Christ," he said at the Arizona state capitol in November 2020.
In his Thanksgiving video, Ye appeared to show solidarity with the January 6 rioters.

"Why, when you had the chance, did you not free the January 6'ers?" Ye says, recounting his purported discussions with Trump.

Ye adds that Trump lashed out at him over his plans to run against the former president in 2024. Trump was taken aback when Ye asked him if he would serve as the rapper's vice president, Ye says in the video.
 
In a string of Thanksgiving tweets, the rapper also posted an alleged text-message discussion between him, Fuentes, and former Breitbart editor and right-wing commentator Milo Yiannopolous. (Ye recently announced that Yiannopolous is working on Ye's presidential campaign.) In the text chain, the group discusses whether political consultant Jason Miller, a former Trump advisor, was the anonymous source for a Daily Beast article about Ye's recent exploits.

Ye has lost hundreds of millions of dollars worth of commercial sponsorships and partnerships over the last two months after publicly posting anti-Semitic comments.

In early October, Ye publicized a heated exchange, allegedly with rapper Sean Combs (AKA P Diddy), in which Ye professed via text message, "Ima use you as an example to show the Jewish people that told you to call me that no one can threaten or influence me."

Instagram blocked Ye's account in response, prompting Ye to return to Twitter after a two-year hiatus. He proceeded to rail against Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Instagram's parent company Meta, while warning he was about to go off on "Jewish people."

"I'm a bit sleepy tonight but when I wake up I'm going death con 3 On JEWISH PEOPLE," Ye tweeted on October 8.
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Izzy Kapnick is the news editor at Miami New Times. He has worked as a legal news reporter in South Florida since 2008, covering environmental law, white-collar crime, and the healthcare industry.
Contact: Izzy Kapnick

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