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FEC to investigate ‘false or fictitious’ filings for Kanye West presidential campaign

The Federal Election Commission (FEC) will investigate “false or fictitious” filings for Kanye West’s presidential campaign after the rapper announced his presidential bid on Saturday.

A spokesperson for the commission told Billboard that as of Tuesday, West did not appear to have filed the necessary paperwork to officially run for president. But two Monday filings under the names “Ye West” and “Mr. Kenye Omari West”  were submitted to the FEC, both listing the White House as the candidate’s address.

The FEC spokesperson told the news outlet that the inaccurate names and the White House address will prompt the commission to investigate whether the forms include “false or fictitious information.”

The commission receives “lots of false and fictitious filings,” and if it discovers incorrect information, it sends a notice to the filer, the spokesperson said.

The filing for “Ye West” indicates that the candidate will use their own money to run as a Libertarian with the candidate’s principal campaign committee VISION2020. The Libertarian Party’s official 2020 candidate is Jo Jorgensen. 

The filing for “Mr. Kenye Omari West” lists his party affiliation as “PEACE AND FREEDOM” and names the campaign committee as “Ye for America.”

FEC spokesman Christian Hilland told The Hill in a statement that the Report Analysis Division is responsible for determining whether new candidate filings have “false or fictitious information.” 

The FEC instituted an “interim verification procedure” in 2016, instructing its staff to send letters to filers who name “fictional characters, obscene language, sexual references, celebrities (where there is no indication that the named celebrity submitted the filing), animals, or similarly implausible entries as the name or contact information.”

The procedure came after an increase in “patently false candidate … names” in 2016.

The filings came after West announced he would be running for president in a Fourth of July tweet.

“We must now realize the promise of America by trusting God, unifying our vision and building our future. I am running for president of the United States!” West tweeted Saturday.

The rapper made his candidacy announcement late in the election cycle, with slightly more than 120 days until Election Day.

Candidates register with the FEC to disclose their campaign finance information, but they need to register in each state to be put on the ballot, Hilland said. Deadlines for filing are approaching in several states, including Michigan, Ohio and Pennsylvania.

West has been an avid supporter of President Trump and said earlier this year that he planned to vote for the president in November.

Tags 2020 election 2020 presidential election candidate Donald Trump FEC Federal Election Commission Kanye West White House
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