Presidential candidate Cornel West announces BLM leader as his running mate

Independent presidential candidate Cornel West announced that Melina Abdullah, a prominent Black Lives Matter activist and professor, will be his 2024 running mate.

Abdullah is the controversial former chairwoman of Pan-African Studies at California State University, Los Angeles, and one of the co-founders of the Los Angeles chapter of BLM. West made the announcement on Wednesday in an episode of the Tavis Smiley show on KBLA radio.

Independent presidential candidate Cornel West and his running mate, Melina Abdullah.

“I wanted to run with someone who would put a smile on the face of Fannie Lou Hamer and Martin Luther King Jr. from the grave,” he said. “Put a smile on their faces from the grave, and that’s the highest standard, as you know that’s not a typical standard of the garden variety politician.”

Abdullah is known for several controversial statements that went viral on social media in February after she alleged the Kansas City Chiefs’ victory in the Super Bowl was a white supremacist conspiracy and that Taylor Swift fans are racist.

“Why do I feel like it’s slightly racist to be a Taylor Swift fan?” she said in February.

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“Why do I feel like this was some right-wing, white-supremacist conspiracy?!?! Booooooo!!!! #SuperBowl,” she wrote in a post on X later that day.

Abdullah comes from a long line of left-wing activists. Her paternal grandfather is Hans Steinicke, a German-Jewish member of the German communist party who fled the country when Hitler came to power. Her father was an avowed Trotskyite.

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