Ellen DeGeneres and RuPaul announce 2020 presidential campaign
Ellen DeGeneres and RuPaul are entering the 2020 presidential race on a joint, independent ticket.
DeGeneres, America’s most beloved talk show host, is to run for president, while RuPaul will be her running mate for vice president in the election. The pair will hold their first campaign rally this month, on April 31.
“Fans have been asking me for years to enter politics. And now, I feel, is the right time. I cannot sit back and watch this country regress anymore. It’s time to take America back from the bigoted views and policies of the current administration,” DeGeneres said in a press release announcing the campaign.
DeGeneres’ pointed remarks about President Donald Trump and his administration appear to refer to the US government’s rollback of rights affecting LGBT+ people in recent years, including a ban on transgender service-people and the erasure of any reference to LGBT+ protections on the official White House website.
Ellen 2020: DeGeneres, RuPaul running for president
Joining DeGeneres on her independent ticket is RuPaul Charles, the world famous drag queen and multi-time Emmy Award-winning host of RuPaul’s Drag Race.
“Shantay, USA,” RuPaul said in a statement. “I’m used to races, but this is certainly a new race for me. But I’m confident that Ellen and I have the stamina to beat Trump and Mike Pence to the finish line.”
On her first campaign poster, DeGeneres, who publicly came out as a lesbian on the cover of Time magazine in 1997, paid homage to that venerable cover with her choice of campaign slogan.
Billboards set to appear around the US this week read, “Yep, I’m prez,” a riff on the famous “Yep, I’m gay” cover.
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RuPaul, meanwhile, is opting for, “Shantay, USA,” which takes its inspiration from the catchphrase “Shantay, you stay” on his hit show, Drag Race.
Ellen and RuPaul’s celebrity supporters for president
Celebrity support for the running mates has spread across social media.
Oprah Winfrey, another talk show host once mooted for a presidential run, said of DeGeneres: “She is the mother I never had. She is the sister everybody would want. She is the friend that everybody deserves. I don’t know a better person. Sorry, Gayle.”
Michelle Visage, RuPaul’s long-time Drag Race co-star and friend, said: “Let’s paint the White House rainbow-coloured!”
Update: April Fool’s Day story!