Kanye West spent nearly $6 million over two months on his quixotic bid for the White House, largely to help get him on November ballots, according to a Federal Election Commission report filed Friday night.
This is the first financial filing by the rapper’s campaign since he formally filed to run as an independent representing the “Birthday Party” in July. His campaign reported raising $6.8 million in July and August, all but 11,000 of which came from West’s own pockets.
Of the $5.9 million spent, a large portion, $4.4 million, was spent on ballot-access services. Several lawsuits have been filed to keep West off the ballots. Judges in Virginia and Arizona were the latest to ruled this week that state election officials remove West from those states’ ballots.
Neither West’s campaign nor the firms paid to help the candidate get on ballots immediately responded to request for comment.
The West campaign paid $1.5 million to Fortified Consulting based out of Tempe, Ariz. The address listed for this company is the same as the address for Lincoln Strategy Group led by Nathan Sproul, who worked for President Donald Trump’s campaign in 2016 and was formerly the executive director of the Arizona Republican Party.
In previous years, Sproul’s companies have been hired by the Republican National Committee and other Republican candidates.
The campaign also paid $1.3 million to Atlas Strategy Group led by Greg Keller, a longtime Republican operative. Keller is the former executive director of the American Conservative Union and has met with President Trump to interview as a campaign manager for his 2016 campaign.
In at least five states Republican operatives have been involved with West’s efforts to get on the November ballots, according to a Washington Post analysis of public filings and social media posts, raising suspicion that some are hoping West, who has been a supporter of President Trump, can siphon votes away from Democratic nominee Joe Biden in what could be very close contests around the country.
The company paid the most by the campaign, $2.6 million, was New York-based communications firm Millennial Strategies. The group previously worked for former South Bend mayor and Democratic presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg.
West also spent $95,000 on an air charter company.
The next look at West’s campaign finances will be on Oct. 20, two weeks before the election.