Taylor Swift took to Instagram this week to express her support for Phil Bredesen and Jim Cooper, two democratic candidates in Tennessee running for government positions while also criticizing Republican candidate Marsha Blackburn.
“Her voting record in Congress appalls and terrifies me,” Swift said.
At the end of the post, she encouraged her 112 million followers to educate themselves on their candidates and vote in the upcoming election. Many were surprised to Swifts post as she has never revealed her political opinions in her years in the spotlight.
A day later, Oct. 9, after winning Artist of the Year at the American Music Awards, she echoed her sentiments from the Instagram post by telling the audience to go out and vote. Since then, vote.com received a large surge of new voter registrations, which has been dubbed “The Taylor Swift Effect” on Twitter.
Taylor Swift’s political alliances had been a mystery until the Instagram post, so political outbursts from both Republicans and Democrats poured onto social media after her statements. Many connections and comments were made to Kanye West, who has made public his support for President Donald Trump and even met with him today to talk about prison reform among other things. President Trump himself commented on Taylor Swift, saying that he “like[s] her music about 25 percent less now.”
While celebrities are taking sides in the political ring, the discussion is focused on whether or not celebrities should mix business and politics. The media and political figures have told many celebrities, specifically sports players, to stay in their lane. Other celebrities, however, have used their status and fan base to establish themselves in the political realm. Some notable celebrities-turned politicians are Arnold Schwarzenegger, Ronald Reagan and Donald Trump.