In a freewheeling Oval Office press conference on Thursday afternoon, rapper Kanye West delivered a succinct explanation for his attraction to President Donald Trump: “male energy.”
Seated across from the president at the Resolute Desk and wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat, West delivered a nearly 10-minute long monologue in which he said he feels like “Superman” when he dons the MAGA hat.
“This hat — it gives me power in a way,” West said.
While the rapper says he didn’t vote in the 2016 election, he said that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton’s “I’m With Her” slogan didn’t make him feel “like a guy that could play catch with his son.” West said that because his parents separated when he was young and his wife’s family is female-dominated, he needed more “male energy” in his life.
“The campaign ‘I’m with her’ just didn’t make me feel, as a guy that didn’t get to see my dad all the time, like a guy that could play catch with his son,” he said. “It was something about when I put this hat on, it made me feel like Superman.”
He told Trump, “You made a Superman cape for me.”
West, who has faced widespread criticism for his high-profile support for Trump and his controversial comments on issues like slavery, bounced from one topic to another, discussing criminal justice reform, an Apple-designed Air Force One, and his own mental health diagnosis.
Trump called West’s rambling, impassioned speech “pretty impressive,” adding that the rapper could speak for him “anytime he wants.”
“He’s a smart cookie,” Trump said. “He gets it.”
“That was quite something,” Trump added before posing for photos.