CHEYENNE, Wyo. >> Rapper and music producer Kanye West’s campaign ran into trouble with the law today on his first day of trying to get on the presidential ballot in his home state of Wyoming.
People gathering signatures on behalf of West and another presidential candidate got too close to polling locations during the state’s primary, election officials said.
The signature-gatherers for West and candidate Brock Pierce refused to keep at least 100 yards away, prompting election workers to call police and sheriff’s deputies at five of the seven polling locations in and around Cheyenne, Laramie County Clerk Debra Lee said.
“Some of them became quite aggressive and refused to leave,” said Lee.
Election officials at Laramie County Community College confiscated a sign that read “registered voters sign here” on one side and “Kanye West” on the other, potentially causing people to falsely believe they needed to sign West’s petition in order to vote, Lee said.
Social media messages seeking comment from West agent Trevian Kutti and Pierce weren’t immediately returned today. Election officials in Casper, where a state elections official said similar violations occurred, didn’t immediately return a phone message seeking comment.
Such incidents don’t affect whether the signatures count as valid or not, said the secretary of state’s office spokesman Will Dinneen.
Widespread problems with people illegally electioneering too close to polling places haven’t been reported in the state in at least 20 years.
“This has been really beyond anything we’ve ever seen,” Lee said.
West announced in July he’s running for president on a ticket he calls the “Birthday Party.” West has since been gathering signatures to get on the ballot in several states.
West filed with state officials on Monday to begin collecting signatures in the state. He has until next Monday to submit 4,025 valid signatures to get on the ballot.
West bought a ranch and has lived in the Cody area in northwestern Wyoming since last year.