Kanye: Trump has to be 'the freshest, the flyest'

Kanye: Trump has to be 'the freshest, the flyest'
© Getty Images

Rap star Kanye West said during a bizarre meeting in the Oval Office that President TrumpDonald John TrumpSchiff urges GOP colleagues to share private concerns about Trump publicly US-China trade talks draw criticism for lack of women in pictures Overnight Defense: Trump to leave 200 troops in Syria | Trump, Kim plan one-on-one meeting | Pentagon asks DHS to justify moving funds for border wall MORE "has to be the freshest, the flyest" as the president of the United States.

"If he don’t look good, we don’t look good," West said, addressing the gaggle of reporters surrounding the desk. "This is our president."


"He has to be the freshest, the flyest," he added, then launched into a rant about improving American industry.

"The flyest planes, the best factories, and we have to make our core be empowered," West said. "We have to bring jobs into America, because our best export is entertainment and ideas. But when we make everything in China and not in America, then we’re cheating on our country." 

West has attracted widespread criticism and attention over his unexpected support for Trump. The Chicago rapper's discography includes lengthy meditations on the challenges of being black and poor in America, and he once famously said on live television, "[Former President] George W. Bush doesn't care about black people."

The rapper during the meeting also discussed why he frequently wears the "Make America Great Again" hat, which was popularized by Trump supporters during the 2016 presidential election.

"They tried to scare me to not wear this hat, my friends," he said. "But this hat, it gives me power in a way."

He then implied that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonHillicon Valley: Trump pushes to speed up 5G rollout | Judge hits Roger Stone with full gag order | Google ends forced arbitration | Advertisers leave YouTube after report on pedophile ring 4 ways Hillary looms over the 2020 race Hillary Clinton met with Biden, Klobuchar to talk 2020: report MORE's campaign slogan "I'm with her" lacked "male energy."

"My dad and my mom separated so I didn’t have a lot of male energy in my home," he said. "I love Hillary, I love everyone, right, but the campaign 'I’m with her' didn’t make me feel as a guy ... like a guy that could play catch with his son." 

"It was something about when I put this hat on, it made me feel like Superman," he said, addressing Trump. "You made a Superman cape for me also as a guy who looks up to you."

The two men embraced at the end of the meeting. Trump called him a "smart cookie."  

Trump has been criticized for stoking racial cultural wars with his comments deriding NFL players protesting racial inequality and calling black public figures unintelligent. In recent months, he has insulted the intelligence of Reps. Maxine WatersMaxine Moore WatersPrivate insurance plays a critical part in home mortgage ecosystem On The Money: Lawmakers closing in on border deal | Dems build case for Trump tax returns | Trump, Xi won't meet before trade deadline | Waters in talks with Mnuchin for testimony Waters in talks with Mnuchin for testimony on lifting of sanctions on Russian firms MORE (R-Calif.), CNN anchor Don Lemon and basketball player Lebron James, who are all black.

He points to Kanye's support as an indication that he has support among African-Americans. 

Polls consistently show that Trump's lowest approval ratings are frequently among black voters, with 93 percent of African-Americans reporting disapproval of the president in an August ABC News/Washington Post poll

"That was quite something," Trump said after West's 10-minute monologue on Thursday.