President Biden on Friday issued an apparent repudiation of Ye, the rapper formerly known as Kanye West, who recently denied the Holocaust and has for weeks been making other antisemitic comments, as well as of “political leaders” who amplify such voices, a reference to former President Trump.
“I just want to make a few things clear,” Biden wrote in a tweet. “The Holocaust happened. Hitler was a demonic figure. And instead of giving it a platform, our political leaders should be calling out and rejecting antisemitism wherever it hides.”
The president’s remarks come a day after Ye went on an antisemitic rant during an appearance on conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’s Infowars, including praise for Nazis and Adolf Hitler.
“Every human being has something of value that they brought to the table, especially Hitler,” Ye said on Thursday while wearing a hooded mask during an hours-long interview on the far-right program. “Also Hitler was born Christian.”
The rapper and fashion mogul later on Thursday posted a photo to his Twitter account showing a swastika intertwined with a Star of David, a post that led to his account being suspended — again. Ye has had his social media accounts suspended on previous occasions for posts containing offensive materiel.
Ye has for weeks sparked controversy with comments criticizing Jewish people generally and his promotion of conspiracy theories about what he has falsely said is “Jewish” control of Hollywood, the music industry and politics.
The rapper, who has been making a series of appearances in far-right media over the last several days, attended a dinner last week with Trump and brought the white nationalist Nick Fuentes as a guest. Trump has said he was not aware of Fuentes views before hosting him at Mar-a-Lago.
The dinner with Ye and Fuentes has led to several elected Republicans criticizing Trump, who last month announced he would run for president in 2024.
The Republican Jewish Coalition condemned Ye’s remarks on Thursday, saying the Infowars episode was “a disgusting triumvirate of conspiracy theorists, Holocaust deniers & antisemites.”