John Legend Reveals How Politics Ruined His Friendship With Kanye West

In a time when politics seem all anyone can talk about, music legends John Legend and Kanye West have drifted apart due to their differences.

While talking with CNN’s David Axelrod, Legend shared how politics caused a divide between him and Kanye West. “We aren’t friends as much as we used to be.”

John Legend Reveals How Politics Ruined His Friendship With Kanye West

Legend admitted, “I honestly think because we publicly disagreed on his running for office, his supporting Trump. I think it became too much for us to sustain our friendship.”

Despite collaborating together on several songs, Legend said that West was “not happy about” him not fully supporting his run for presidency in 2020. “He was upset that I didn’t support his run for presidency of the United States of America — for understandable reasons,” Legend continued. 

John Legend Reveals How Politics Ruined His Friendship With Kanye West
DFree /

“I wasn’t alone in that, but, you know, he was not happy about that. And we really haven’t been close since then.”

Legend added that politics never used to be a part of their friendship, admitting they “never talked about politics before” 2018. You may recall, after West publicly supported former President Donald Trump, Legend texted his friend asking him to reconsider, BuzzFeed reported.

“Hey it’s JL. I hope you’ll reconsider aligning yourself with Trump,” Legend reportedly wrote in the text message. “You’re way too powerful and influential to endorse who he is and what he stands for. As you know, what you say really means something to your fans. They are loyal to you and respect your opinion.”

John Legend Reveals How Politics Ruined His Friendship With Kanye West

The message continued, saying, “So many people who love you feel so betrayed right now because they know the harm that Trump’s policies cause, especially to people of color. Don’t let this be part of your legacy. You’re the greatest artist of our generation.”

To which, Kanye West responded, adding, “I love you John and I appreciate your thoughts. You bringing up my fans or my legacy is a tactic based on fear used to manipulate my free thought.”

West went on to call Legend a “sellout” when he didn’t fully support his run for presidency and even demanded an apology.  This came after West alleged that he “appreciated” his dialogue with John Legend because I’m actually very empathetic. I’m still the kid from the telethon. I feel when people think of MAGA, they don’t think of empathy.”

John Legend Reveals How Politics Ruined His Friendship With Kanye West
Liam Goodner /

However, while Legend and West may no longer be friends, work or otherwise, Legend did praise West for always being true to himself. “I think he’s been very open with who he is and his struggles with mental health. And he’s very real, honestly. So I think there’s not a lot about him that people don’t get.”

“He’s been pretty upfront with his opinions, his struggles, all the things that he’s dealing with. And I think what you see with him is pretty much what you get. I don’t feel like he’s a whole separate person in private than he is in public,” Legend added. “I think you’re pretty much seeing the real Kanye publicly.”

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