"What’s the message here, and why am I apart of it?" Dunst tweeted back at West

By Sean Neumann
August 19, 2020 10:19 PM
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Kanye West rolled out a 2020 campaign promo in head-scratching fashion this week — with two of the famous faces included distancing themselves from West.

On Tuesday West, 43, tweeted out a checkered collage of celebrities, activists and other figures along with the phrase "Kanye 2020 Vision." His tweeted included the hashtag #2020VISION, in what has become his de facto campaign slogan.

Vogue editor Anna Wintour and actress Kirsten Dunst were among those whose images were included in the promo. (Dunst's was lifted from a 2002 Vanity Fair profile.)

However, both a source close to Wintour and a rep for Dunst confirmed to PEOPLE that the use of their images was not agreed to.

"What’s the message here, and why am I apart of it?" Dunst tweeted back at West on Wednesday night.

West's improbable campaign was launched on July 4 via a tweet and has faced mounting scrutiny over his true intentions, given the barriers he face and his ties to the Republican Party, despite officially running as an independent.

West has also moved forward with the campaign at the same time that he has made a series of alarming statements, including sharing intimate details about his family and criticizing wife Kim Kardashian West and his mother-in-law, Kris Jenner.

His wife later asked for "compassion" while linking his behavior to his bipolar disorder.

A campaign promo Kanye West tweeted on Tuesday
| Credit: Kanye West/Twitter

West's political team has operated quietly while rarely responding to media requests for information, if at all, while his 2020 campaign has pushed to get the musician's name on a handful of state election ballots ahead of the Nov. 3 election.

(His campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment about the campaign promo showing Wintour and Dunst.)

Earlier this month, The New York Times reported that White House senior aide Jared Kushner — widely seen as the architect of President Donald Trump's re-election campaign — met privately with West in Colorado. (West later said on social media it was about discussing a book.)

A lawyer who has represented Trump's 2020 campaign was also seen delivering West's campaign paperwork in Wisconsin in an effort to appear on the battleground state's ballot.

"Just a Republican operative trying to get Kanye West on the ballot," tweeted Ben Rhodes, the former deputy national security adviser under President Barack Obama and Biden. "What a disgusting dirty trick that shows no respect for voters or whatever Kanye is going through."

West has successfully filed to appear on ballots in Arkansas, Colorado, Oklahoma, Utah and Vermont. However, his paperwork was denied in New Jersey and Illinois.

His petitions in Iowa, Missouri, Minnesota, Montana, Ohio and West Virginia are still pending.

In Wisconsin, a review of his petition led to a recommendation that the state deny his petition to appear on the 2020 ballot. (A bipartisan Elections Commission board will decide the matter Thursday morning, according to The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.)

At the moment, West can only win 31 electoral college votes in the five states he'll appear on ballots in. A presidential candidate needs at least 270 to win the election.

President Donald Trump (left) and Kanye West in 2016
President Donald Trump hugs Kanye West during a visit to the White House in 2018.
| Credit: Oliver Contreras - Pool/Getty

The ties between GOP figures West's campaign have prompted questions about whether the musician's long-shot presidential bid is a way to siphon votes from Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden.

Trump campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh told PEOPLE in a statement earlier this month that the president's campaign has "no knowledge of anything Kanye West is doing or who is doing it for him."

Alesha Guenther, a spokeswoman for the Wisconsin Republican Party, previously told PEOPLE that Republicans in the state "welcome" West's bid to appear on the ballot.

"It appears that the Kanye West campaign made a smart decision by hiring an experienced election attorney," Guenther said. "We welcome Kanye West and all other candidates who qualified for ballot access to the race, and look forward to delivering Wisconsin’s 10 electoral votes to President Trump."