By LA Weekly
By Henry Rollins
By Weekly Photographers
By Shea Serrano
By Nate "Igor" Smith
By Dan Weiss
By Erica E. Phillips
By Kai Flanders
Economic Policy:Like most Dems in the post-DLC years, West is an unabashed capitalist, constantly extolling the virtues of diamonds and Louis Vuitton, while excoriating himself for his profligacy in the next breath (witness John “$400 haircut” Edwards). Like the Democrats, West has no problem with special-interest groups, inking deals with Pepsi, Lincoln and Nike. (Thankfully, no line of condoms is in the works.)
Foreign Policy:A pacifist, West has had few beefs, collaborating with everyone from West Coast gangsta rappers like the Game to Southern-fried slingers like Li’l Wayne. Even in his confrontation with 50, Kanye has shied away from any direct provocation, repeatedly articulating his admiration for the leader of G-Unit and begging him not to retire after Graduationoutsells Curtis.West also would not have invaded Iraq without U.N. approval and/or a smoking gun. I’m just making up that last part.
Struggles With Cabinet:In a genre known for its short-lived artistic relationships, Kanye’s clique has been remarkably consistent. There has been little turnover in a group that includes Jay-Z, Common, Lupe Fiasco and Rhymefest.
Gun Control:Kanye recently declared, “There’s nothing about wearing a pink Polo that would make anyone believe that I would hold a gun.” Enough said.
A Completely Unscientific Straw Poll for the Purposes of Predicting the Winner (Margin of error: high)
THE HISPANIC VOTE
50 Cent: 74%
Why: Undying loyalty to 50 Cent’s mentor Dr. Dre for producing the soundtrack of every lowrider in Los Angeles from the years 1992–1999.
THE SOCCER-MOM VOTE
Why: Kanye is safe, nonthreatening and downright cuddly compared to 50. Plus, his mama’s-boy move to appear on the cover of his mother’s parenting book sealed the deal.
THE HOOD VOTE
Why:The streets are 50 Cent’s base, and his challenge to Kanye is clearly an effort to galvanize his supporters, a tactic reeking in Rove-ian savvy. Then again, deep down everyone knows Kanye’s record will be better.
THE HIPSTER VOTE
Why:C’mon, everyone knows hipsters don’t actually buyrecords. However, I’d bet my life that Kanye wins the hipster illegal-download sweepstakes because of the Daft Punk sample.