Kanye West Still Has Time to File for President By Most States’ Deadlines

Kanye West is running for President.

Getty Kanye West is running for President.

Kanye West announced on Twitter that he’s running for President of the United States in 2020. Even though it may feel late in the game, he actually still has time to file as an independent with the FEC in the majority of states. But in some states, he’s already missed his chance according to filing deadlines — and some of these states were rich with electoral votes.

Here’s what you need to know.


Some State Deadlines Are Coming Up Really Fast

In order to get on the ballot in each state, an independent candidate for President must meet the state’s requirements by the filing deadline. These requirements often include a certain number of signatures. Although West has missed the ballot in some states, he still has time in many other states to file. But some state deadlines are coming up really fast.

Here are the filing deadlines. These include deadlines for the FEC for “filing petitions.” Ballotpedia also lists filing deadlines in each state.

First are the states and deadlines he’s missed (unless, in some cases, he already filed a petition with the FEC.) These are deadlines shared by the FEC and Ballotpedia.

  • Arizona – FEC 6/14 (state deadline is 9/4/2020)
  • Connecticut – FEC 1/21
  • Illinois – FEC 6/26
  • Indiana – 9/1 for the FEC, but Ballotpedia lists 6/30 for the state so this deadline may be over
  • Maine – 8/15 for the FEC, but 6/1 for the state according to Ballotpedia
  • New Mexico 9/12 for Independent candidates for the FEC, but 6/25 for the state according to Ballotpedia
  • New York 8/22 for independent candidates for the FEC, but 5/26 for the state according to Ballotpedia
  • North Carolina – FEC 6/30, 3/3 for the state according to Ballotpedia
  • Rhode Island – FEC 6/28
  • South Dakota – FEC 6/20 deadline, 8/4 for the state
  • Texas – FEC 5/8 (independent)
  • Washington – FEC 7/1

According to these deadlines, he’s missed his opportunity in some electoral-rich states like Texas and New York. Could he make an argument that the deadlines should have been extended because of the pandemic? Possibly, but it’s not known if that argument would work.

Here are the states with independent petition deadlines still to come. This list includes the FEC’s petition deadlines and the deadlines for states as shared by Ballotpedia.

  • Alabama – 8/31 for FEC,  8/20 for state with 5,000 signatures
  • Alaska – 8/9 for FEC, 8/5 for the state with 3,212 signatures
  • Arkansas – 8/7 for FEC, 8/3 for the state with 1,000 signatures
  • California – 8/11 for FEC, 8/7 for the state with 196,964 signatures
  • Colorado – 7/10 for the FEC, 8/5 for the state if qualifying with a fee of $1,000 and not signatures
  • Delaware – 9/1 for the FEC, 9/1 for the state with 7,141 signatures
  • D.C. – 8/15 for the FEC
  • Florida – 7/15 for the FEC, 7/15 for the state with 132,781 signatures
  • Georgia – 7/11 for the FEC, 8/14 for the state
  • Hawaii – 9/8 for the FEC, 8/5 for the state with 4,377 signatures
  • Idaho – 8/24 for the FEC, 8/25 for the state with 1,000 signatures
  • Indiana – 9/1 for the FEC, but Ballotpedia lists 6/30 for the state so this deadline may be over
  • Iowa – 8/18 for the FEC, 8/14 for the state with 1,500 signatures
  • Kansas – 7/31 for the FEC, 8/3 for the state with 5,000 signatures
  • Kentucky – 8/8 for the FEC, 9/4 for the state with 5,000 signatures
  • Louisiana – 8/4 for the FEC, 8/21 for the state with 5,000 signatures or $500 fee
  • Maine – 8/15 for the FEC, but 6/1 for the state
  • Maryland – 8/7 for the FEC, 8/3 for the state with 10,000 signatures
  • Massachusetts – 8/1 for the FEC, 8/25 for the state with 10,000 signatures
  • Michigan – 7/20 for the FEC, 7/16 for the state with 30,000 signatures (at least 100 from at least half of the state’s congressional districts)
  • Minnesota – 9/12 for the FEC, 8/18 for the state with 2,000 signatures
  • Missouri – 7/31 for the FEC, 7/27 for the state with 10,000 signatures
  • Montana – 8/9 for the FEC, 8/19 for the state with 5,000 signatures or 5% fo all votes cast for the successful candidate
  • Nebraska – 9/1 for the FEC, 8/1 for the state with 2,500 signatures
  • Nevada – 7/7 for Independent candidates for the FEC, 8/14 for the state with 9,608 signatures
  • New Hampshire – 9/6 for the FEC, 9/2 for the state with 3,000 signatures
  • New Jersey – 7/31 for the FEC (state not known)
  • New Mexico 9/12 for Independent candidates for the FEC, but 6/25 for the state according to Ballotpedia
  • New York 8/22 for independent candidates for the FEC, but 5/26 for the state according to Ballotpedia
  • North Dakota – 9/8 for the FEC, 8/31 for the state with 4,000 signatures
  • Ohio – 8/24 for the FEC, 8/5 for the state with 5,000 signatures
  • Oklahoma – 7/15 for the FEC, 7/15 for the state with a filing fee of $35,000 or signatures
  • Oregon – 8/29 for the FEC, 8/11 for the state with signatures
  • Pennsylvania – 8/1 for the FEC, 8/3 for the state with 5,000 signatures
  • South Carolina – 7/15 for the FEC, 7/15 for the state
  • Tennessee – 8/17 for the FEC, 8/20 for the state with 275 signatures
  • Utah – 8/30 for independent candidates for the FEC, 1,000 signatures by 8/17 for the state
  • Vermont – 9/21 for the FEC, 8/21 for the state with 1,000 signatures
  • Virginia – 8/25 for the FEC, 8/21 for the state with 5,000 signatures
  • West Virginia – 8/1 for the FEC, 7/31 for the state with 7,144 signatures
  • Wisconsin – 9/5 for the FEC, 8/4 for the state with 2,000 signatures
  • Wyoming – 8/23 (independent) and 8/21 (third party) for the FEC, 8/25 for the state with 4,025 signatures

Some of the state deadlines he’s missed are for electoral-rich states like Texas and New York. In total, he’s likely missed the deadline for 12 states. So winning, especially with missing the deadline in delegate-rich states, could be very difficult.

Of course, there’s another option — write-in ballots. But that’s an even tougher road than running as independent and appearing on the ballots. Back in 2016 when many people wanted to write-in Bernie Sanders for President, only a few states allowed write-ins without the candidate’s registration, and some registrations required early deadlines.

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