Kanye West Is Spending His Own Money on Bid: Campaign Update
U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference in the James S. Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington D.C., U.S. (Photographer: Al Drago/Bloomberg)

Kanye West Is Spending His Own Money on Bid: Campaign Update

Kanye West is self-financing his presidential bid. West makes the Kentucky presidential ballot. And Democratic nominee Joe Biden says he has been tested for coronavirus.

There are 60 days until the election.

Other Developments:

Kanye West’s Campaign Filings Show He Is Self-Financing

Kanye West is spending his own money to run for president, putting up $6.7 million while spending $5.9 million, according to his campaign’s first report to the Federal Election Commission on Friday, filed 15 days after it was due.

West, who announced his quixotic effort in July, raised just $11,473 from other donors. The report says he is loaning his money to the campaign rather than donating it.

The campaign spent $4.1 million to get the hip hop star on ballots for the November election. West has made the ballot in at least 11 states: Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah, and Vermont. He also spent $444,000 on polling and $259,288 on his campaign website.

Earlier Friday, West’s campaign told the FEC that it was changing its status and would begin filing monthly reports rather than quarterly. Federal election law requires presidential candidates to file monthly reports in election years. -- Bill Allison

Kanye West Makes Another State’s Ballot (4:34 p.m.)

West will appear on the Nov. 3 presidential ballot in Kentucky as an independent candidate after filing enough petition signatures on Friday to qualify, according to the secretary of state’s office.

The rapper also filed paperwork Friday to get on the ballot in Mississippi, and state officials are scheduled to meet Tuesday to rule on his candidacy, the secretary of state’s office said.

Courts in Arizona and Virginia ruled on Thursday that West could not appear on the ballot in those states, though the rapper is appealing the ruling in Arizona, which is competitive this year. He’s also sued to overturn decisions keeping him off the ballot in Ohio, Wisconsin and West Virginia.

West has now made the ballot in at least 11 states: Arkansas, Colorado, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah, and Vermont.

Biden Got ‘Deep Test’ for Coronavirus (2:36 p.m.)

Biden said Friday that he has been tested for the coronavirus and would be screened regularly.

“Yes, I have,” he said at a news conference in Wilmington, Delaware. “I’ve been tested once with the deep test and I’m going to continue to be tested on a regular basis.”

Biden’s answer suggests that he received the deep nasal swab test for coronavirus, which involves putting a very long swab far back into the nose to collect secretions.

In July, Biden said he had not been tested, and a campaign spokeswoman said in an interview with ABC News in late August that he had not been tested.

In the early months of the pandemic, Trump also said he had not been tested but by July White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said he is at least daily. “The president is the most tested man in America,” she said.

Trump Gets Police Union Nod, as Biden Circulates His Own List (2:01 p.m.)

The nation’s America’s oldest and largest law enforcement labor group announced Friday that it is endorsing Trump, while Biden circulated a list of law enforcement officials supporting him.

Patrick Yoes, national president of the Fraternal Order of Police, which has more than 355,000 members, said in a statement that it was “proud to endorse a candidate who calls for law and order across our nation,” echoing Trump’s own rhetoric.

The union has not endorsed a Democratic presidential candidate since Bill Clinton in 1996 and endorsed Trump in 2016 as well.

Meantime, the Biden campaign announced endorsements from more than 190 law enforcement officials. The bipartisan list, first obtained by Fox News, includes former state and federal prosecutors, state attorneys general, district attorneys, police chiefs and sheriffs from across the country.

It includes some notable Democrats, including former Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano; former Colorado Senator Ken Salazar, and former Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection Gil Kerlikowske, as well as former Arizona Attorney General Grant Woods, a Republican.

“When asked the question, would you feel safe in Joe Biden’s America? The answer is yes,” said retired police chief and former president of the Major Cities Chiefs Association Tom Manger in the announcement.

Poll Shows Florida Latinos Favor Biden (12:51 p.m.)

A new poll shows Biden ahead of Trump by 16 percentage points among Latino voters in Florida, a key demographic in a must-win state.

In a survey by Democratic research firm Equis Research first published in Politico on Friday, 53% of Latino voters in Florida backed Biden and 37% backed Trump.

The poll was not all good news for Biden, however. If those numbers hold, Biden’s result would be about 11 percentage points lower than Clinton received in 2016, according to exit polls. The survey showed Trump improving his standing with Florida Latinos by about 2 percentage points.

Equis co-founder Carlos Odio wrote on Twitter that it “makes sense” that Trump would have “room to grow” with Latinos given that his “2016 numbers were basement-level.”

Some Florida Democrats have criticized Biden’s outreach to Latinos in their state. In July, the Miami Herald published a letter sent to the state party by 94 field organizers claiming that the campaign mistreated staff.

The survey of 1,081 registered Latino voters in Florida was conducted Aug. 20-25. It has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.

Veterans Group Hits Trump on ‘Loser’ Comments in Ad (10:48 a.m.)

A liberal political action committee aimed at veteran voters already has an ad up hitting Trump over reports published late Thursday that he belittled the nation’s war dead.

The minute-long video features parents of military members killed in action pushing back on remarks, which Trump has denied, reported in The Atlantic and confirmed in part by the Washington Post and the Associated Press, that he said a cemetery with World War I veterans in France was “filled with losers.” Both articles cited unnamed sources.

“My son is not a loser,” says the mother of Sgt. James Ayube II, who was killed in action in Afghanistan in 2010. “My message to Donald Trump is this: You have no right being the commander-in-chief.”

A father says that his son died “honorably serving his country” something another parent says “Donald Trump will never understand.” The father of Lance Cpl. Jesus Suarez Del Solar, who was killed in Iraq, says in Spanish that Trump does not know what it is to sacrifice.

A recent poll by Military Times and the Institute for Veterans and Military Families showed a plurality backed Biden over Trump, a reversal from 2016, when Trump had a significant edge over Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton in the same poll.

Trump Sends Open Letter to Anti-Abortion Leaders (7:13 a.m.)

Trump sent an open letter to leaders of the anti-abortion movement Thursday, echoing a similar move that helped him consolidate support in 2016.

In the letter, available on the Trump campaign website, Trump claims that he has been the “most pro-life president in our nation’s history,” noting his judicial appointments, his address to the annual March for Life rally and several policy moves.

The letter pledges that in a second term, Trump would fully defund Planned Parenthood, appoint more conservative judges and work to have Congress pass three bills restricting abortion.

“With your help, I will win re-election, ensuring we have another four years to fight in the trenches for unborn children and their mothers,” he writes.

The letter also accuses Democratic nominee Joe Biden and his running mate, Kamala Harris, of “abortion extremism,” falsely claiming that Biden supports “infanticide,” or killing an infant after it is born.

Trump sent a similar letter to anti-abortion leaders in September of 2016, which helped firm up support among conservative voters, along with two lists of judges that he said he would consider naming to the Supreme Court.

Michelle Obama Teams Up With Cindy McCain, Ann Romney on Voting Special

Former First Lady Michelle Obama is teaming up with the two women who almost had her title in an effort to get out the vote.

A TV special partly organized by Obama’s When We All Vote group in mid-September will feature Ann Romney, wife of Utah Senator Mitt Romney, and Cindy McCain, the widow of Arizona Senator John McCain.

The hour-long special, “VOMO: Vote or Miss Out,” will feature appearances from comedians Tiffany Haddish, Will Ferrell and Jay Leno; radio host Charlamagne tha God; rapper 2 Chainz; model Kaia Gerber and actress Scarlett Johansson, among others. It will be hosted by comedian Kevin Hart.

Romney’s husband, the only Senate Republican to vote to convict Trump in his impeachment trial, has said that he will not vote for the president in November. McCain spoke at the Democratic National Convention about her husband’s friendship with Biden.

The special will also feature two Republicans who have been critical of Trump: Maryland Governor Larry Hogan and former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

More Mail-In Ballots Headed Out Soon

As North Carolina officially kicks off 2020 voting by sending out the nation’s first mail-in ballots today, several other battlegrounds are poised to join it in the coming days.

Under state laws, Pennsylvania will begin mailing out ballots as early as Monday, Sept. 14; Wisconsin on Thursday, Sept. 17; Georgia, Michigan and Virginia on Saturday, Sept. 19; and Florida as early as Thursday, Sept. 24, according to information compiled by the National Conference of State Legislatures.

Arizona will not send out mail-in ballots until early October.

Justin Levitt, a law professor at Loyola Marymount University tracking election-related lawsuits, said that once a state starts sending out ballots, any undecided legal cases related to ballot designs or which candidates will appear on the ballot will be on hold until after the election.

Coming Up:

Biden will travel to Michigan on Wednesday, while Jill Biden visits Minnesota.

Trump is planning to hold a high-dollar fundraiser in Las Vegas on Sept. 13.

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