Arizona Supreme Court Denies Ballot Bid By Rapper Kanye West
By Howard Fischer
Capitol Media Services
PHOENIX -- Arizonans who like Kanye West won't be able to vote for him for president.
In a brief order this afternoon the Arizona Supreme Court upheld a trial judge's decision that the electors West had chosen to represent him on the ballot had failed to comply with a state law requiring them to first file a "statement of interest'' with the secretary of state.
What that meant, according to Justice Ann Scott Timmer, writing for the court, is that nominating petitions submitted before the statements had been filed were invalid. And that left West short of the number of signatures he needed to qualify as an independent candidate for the Nov. 3 General Election.
The justices sidestepped the question of whether West's registration as a Republican in Wyoming precludes him from running as an independent in Arizona.
In doing so, the justices rejected arguments by West's attorneys that it was improper of them to ignore the will of nearly 58,000 Arizonans who signed petitions to have his name on the ballot. They also said it is illegal for the state to impose its own requirements on who can run for political office.
Today's decision only affects Arizona.
Earlier in the day election officials in Mississippi concluded he could have his name on the ballot there. He also has qualified in several other states.
Democrat interests have fought his candidacy, pointing out West's friendship with President Trump and suggesting he wanted to get on the ballot solely to siphon votes away from Democrat Joe Biden.