Pop music superstar Taylor Swift broke her long-held public political silence in an Instagram post Sunday night, encouraging her followers to vote in the November midterm elections. She also said she would be voting for Democrats and slammed Republican senate candidate, U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn.
“In the past I’ve been reluctant to publicly voice my political opinions, but due to several events in my life and in the world in the past two years, I feel very differently about that now,” Swift wrote in her post.
“I always have and always will cast my vote based on which candidate will protect and fight for the human rights I believe we all deserve in this country,” she added. “I believe in the fight for LGBTQ rights, and that any form of discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender is WRONG. I believe that the systemic racism we still see in this country towards people of color is terrifying, sickening and prevalent.”
“I cannot vote for someone who will not be willing to fight for dignity for ALL Americans, no matter their skin color, gender or who they love,” the superstar continued. She then lambasted senate candidate Blackburn, saying she cannot vote for her due to her political record. She listed some of the policies Blackburn supports, including the idea that businesses have a right to turn away gay patrons. She concluded by writing, “These are not MY Tennessee values.”
“I will be voting for Phil Bredesen for Senate and Jim Cooper for House of Representatives.”
Cooper currently represents the fifth congressional district based in Nashville. Bredesen is a former Tennessee governor and mayor of Nashville who is locked in a tight senate battle with Blackburn.
Swift included in her post a plea to her followers to get engaged with the political process, writing:
“Please, please educate yourself on the candidates running in your state and vote based on who most closely represents your values. For a lot of us, we may never find a candidate or party with whom we agree 100% on every issue, but we have to vote anyway.”
She finished her controversial posting by asking her followers to register to vote by the Tennessee registration deadline of October 9th.
Not everyone appreciated Swift for speaking up about politics at this time. Some of her fans on social media expressed their opinions that they would have preferred Swift remain silent about her political views. A large number of country music fans do not share her liberal views. So it took courage for Swift to go public with her opinions on politics. Clearly she — like millions of other Americans — believe that this is an important election year and it is not a time for prominent people like her to remain silent.
I am a lifelong Democrat with a passion for social justice and progressive issues. I have degrees in writing, economics and law from the University of Iowa.