Bad blood: Newsom calls GOP conspiracies over Taylor Swift ‘sad and pathetic’

(Rich Pedroncelli/AP)

Bad blood: Newsom calls GOP conspiracies over Taylor Swift ‘sad and pathetic’

California Politics, 2024 Elections

Taryn Luna

February 5, 2024

Gov. Gavin Newsom may have scored points with Swifties this weekend when he criticized the GOP


Taylor Swift

who encouraged her millions of fans to register to vote,

“sad and pathetic” during an MSNBC interview.

“They don’t want people to vote,” Newsom told Jonathan Capehart

about the Republican Party

. “They want to make it harder because they can’t win if you vote. How sad and pathetic the Republican Party has become that Taylor Swift is literally a threat to them for one reason: she wants people to vote.”

Capehart had asked the governor of California for this


his thoughts on the “mania” and right-wing conspiracy theories about Swift and her Super Bowl-bound boyfriend, Kansas City Chiefs, Travis Kelce.

Kelce, who has appeared in Pfizer ads encouraging Americans to get vaccinated


and Swift, who endorsed it


Biden in 2020 and

often encourages her fans to register to vote

have become the target of criticism from Donald Trump loyalists and the subject of a series of unproven and bizarre claims ahead of the presidential election.

Among the claims circulating on social media, Trump supporters allege that the National Football League is rigged and that the Chiefs reached the playoffs simply to give Swift a platform to support the president


Biden’s re-election campaign at halftime.

Fox News host Jesse Watters claimed

rather the latter

month that Swift is at the top of the music world because “four years ago the Pentagon Psychological Operations Unit floated,” making her an “asset.”

He showed a video of a NATO meeting that mentioned Swift as an example of someone with an influential social media presence during a presentation on countering disinformation campaigns online.

A Pentagon spokesperson dismissed the claim as a “conspiracy theory” and referenced a 2014 Swift hit by saying they planned to “shrug it off.”

In his segment, Watters said he had no evidence to prove Swift is “a front for a secret political agenda.”

“If we did, we would share it,” Watters said. “But we’re curious because the pop star who supported Biden is urging millions of her followers to vote.”


ring wing-right

media personalities on Fox and the One America News Network have spread and criticized Swift conspiracies

her decisions based on the idea that she should do so

share her political views

and support Biden


A quick endorsement from Biden

in the 2024 presidential race

could be useful to the president during

she is that of the musician

record-breaking Eras tour, which is estimated to have added more than $4 billion to the country’s gross domestic product. A Morning Consult survey in March found that 53% of American adults are Swift fans.

During the MSNBC segment, Capehart asked Newsom if he had any advice for the artist as she is in the political spotlight.

“I’m not telling Taylor Swift anything,” Newsom said. “I’m in awe of her resilience. She’s a remarkable person. Politicians should learn from that example. I’m not concerned about her ability to weather these rather weak storm systems from Jesse Watters and a few others.”

The deeper problem, Newsom joked, is that Kelce is on the wrong team because the Chiefs are playing the San Francisco 49ers of California in the Super Bowl on

Sunday February 11

in Las Vegas.

“In terms of the 49ers beating Kansas City handily and righting the wrongs of a few years ago when we came up short in that second half in Miami, I’m looking forward to it,” Newsom said.

a former mayor of San Francisco.

“But like I said, Travis and Taylor are resilient. They will both bounce back from their Super Bowl loss.”


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