Perhaps the only thing Taylor Swift has in common with Libs of TikTok creator Chaya Raichik is that their most ardent fans are terrifying—albeit in markedly different ways.
Swifties might ruin a perfectly good wedding if it means possibly catching a glimpse of their beloved poet-warrior, while Libs of TikTok lovers have responded with bomb threats to Raichik’s reports on the scourge of wokeness. Raichik must be aware, however, that Swift’s extremely dedicated, action-oriented fans are far more legion than her own, which is why she is sounding the alarm over how they might vote.
As the Super Bowl approaches, it has become increasingly clear that conservatives and liberals alike see Taylor Swift as the ultimate political football. Her dominance over pop culture is such that it’s barely an exaggeration to say that she elevated both movie theater-going and the NFL last year, by releasing a record-breaking concert film and dating Kansas City Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce. Her utter, inescapable ubiquity has convinced some conspiracy-minded folks that it simply couldn’t have happened organically, and was thus engineered to achieve some nefarious end. No way could a talented pop star become stratospherically popular without a rigged system in place!
On Monday, no less than former presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy posted his best guess at where Operation: All Taylor Swift Everything is leading.
According to Ramaswamy, the fix is in. Taylor Swift’s songs were possibly developed by Swedish music scientists, with the intent of radicalizing Gen Z-millennial cuspers toward centrism, while all forms of media dutifully played their role. As ridiculous as it may sound, though, to anyone who isn’t awash in a sea of online content every day, this conspiracy theory has gained some popularity beyond Ramaswamy. Popular MAGA personality Mike Crispi made his propaganda predictions a day earlier: “Calling it now: KC wins, goes to Super Bowl, Swift comes out at the halftime show and ‘endorses’ Joe Biden with Kelce at midfield.” Conservative firebrand Charlie Kirk, fresh off his Martin Luther King Jr Was Bad, Actually tour, has endorsed the theory as well, reportedly saying “It seems as though things are aligning for that.”
That it seems like Taylor Swift might endorse Joe Biden for president should be something too obvious to invite this kind of conspiratorial thinking. If Nikki Haley continues losing state primaries, which seems likely, Donald Trump will be the presumptive GOP nominee. Swift was vocally critical of Trump in 2020, and it’s difficult to imagine that anything has happened in the years since to change her mind on that topic. In fact, if anything, Swift has become demonstrably more left-leaning in that time, much to the chagrin of former fan Raichik. Her eventual endorsement of Biden seems inevitable—if she is inclined to make one at all.
The idea that she would make her electoral choice announcement into the kind of excitement-generating album-release-style moment that has propelled and sustained her spectacular rise, rather than a tasteful Instagram post, is a flight of fancy. Attaching a date to it, like the Super Bowl halftime show, is just begging to be proven wrong.
It doesn’t take keen investigatory skills, though, to prove that a high-profile endorsement moment isn’t already in the works. On the same day Ramaswamy posted his theory, the New York Times ran a story about Team Biden’s desperation to secure the Swift endorsement. This administration is just as nervous about not getting the Swiftie vote as its many detractors are of it happening.
Of course, since conspiratorial thinking begets further conspiratorial thinking, one might be inclined to wonder exactly how that story came to be published at this particular moment.