Rapper Kanye West’s televised meeting with US President Donald Trump in the Oval Office became the top trending topic on Twitter on Thursday, prompting a range of reaction from concern over the singer’s mental health, to jokes, memes and political commentary.
Following is a sampling of reaction on Twitter, television news and other media:
“Kanye ranting is just… sad.” – TV journalist Soledad O’Brien
“Putting a mentally ill Kanye West in front of the Camera should be considered a form of abuse. @KimKardashian you need to do something about your husband, he’s clearly severely mentally ill — and that’s putting it lightly.” – Twitter user [email protected]
“I felt like I was sitting in on a psychiatrist visit and a commercial for Donald Trump.” – Democratic Congresswoman Jackie Speier, speaking on CNN.
“@Kanye couldn’t have said it better: Illegal guns are the problem, and we have the right to bear arms. The #NRA’s nearly six million members are glad to see a celebrity who gets it, and who is willing to stand with the #2A.” – The National Rifle Association.
“Kim Kardashian. Come get your husband.” – Twitter user @promotemycause.
“Kanye West just delivered the craziest Oval Office performance of all time.” – Rolling Stone magazine
“I don’t have a Kanye quip. This is actually sad for the country, and not hilarious.” – Democratic Senator Brian Schatz of Hawaii
“Wow! That was bonkers. … That was crazy.” – news anchor Ali Velshi, speaking on MSNBC.
“Kanye is off the plantation. The media and the Democrats watch in horror!” – conservative commentator Dinesh D’Souza
“I’m sad for Kanye West. It is very possible that he is suffering from a manic episode, and there is a good chance that he needs some addition help. It’s outrageous that Trump exploited him today by allow him to ramble on in the Oval Office.” – Ed Krassenstein, co-founder of news website HillReporter.com, on Twitter
“Dumb handwringing over Trump having Kanye in the Oval Office after years of slobbering over the celebs that had meetings with Obama is the exact stuff that makes everyone hate the press and like trump more.” – Twitter user @bccover
“So … correct me if I’m wrong, but a Hurricane has devastated parts of America and the President is whooping it up with Kanye in his office?” – Twitter user @th3j35t3r
“Instead of challenging the merits of what Kanye is actually discussing with Trump, some devolve to the lowest common denominator rebuttal. No objections or “surreal” headlines when he met with Obama (or said ‘Bush hates black people’).” – talk radio host Dana Loesch.
“We’re about two days away from Kim Kardashian announcing her divorce.” – Twitter user @MildlyAmused
The surreal hug
Kanye West proved his ‘love’ for Trump on Thursday by suddenly striding from his chair at a surreal White House meeting to hug the president.
“I love this guy right here,” the serial Grammy-winning artist declared in the Oval Office, before taking the President in his arms.
The rapper had been invited to lunch to discuss prison reform but turned what would ordinarily have been a staid White House photo-op into possibly one of the more unusual — and profanity laden — encounters in the Oval Office’s storied history.
Talking loudly and rapidly on everything from Trump’s protectionist trade polices to replacing Air Force One with a hydrogen plane, black gun crime, being married to Kim Kardashian and “infinite amounts of universe,” West left the normally loquacious president nearly speechless.
“That was quite something,” Trump finally said to laughter from astonished senior aides and journalists at the end of the soliloquy, which West punctuated with bangs of his fist on the legendary Resolute desk, used by presidents since the 1880s.
The US President said West “could very well be” future presidential material, to which the rapper said he would not want to get in the way of the Republican’s 2020 reelection. “Only after him in 2024,” West said.