From Ariana Grande to Donald Glover: the celebrities endorsing Democrats for president

Famous faces have thrown support and in some cases money behind their favourite candidates in the 2020 primary race

Celebrity endorsements can be a powerful tool to reach voters, even if their impact can be mixed.

But with less than a week to go before the caucuses in Iowa the crucial first voting state in the race to become the Democratic presidential candidate to take on Donald Trump in the November election every little boost in support could help.

Here are some of the famous faces who have thrown their support, and in some cases their money, behind their favourite candidates.

Bernie Sanders

The Vermont senator could be considered a celebrity in his own right. The popular yet polarizing candidate has appeared in viral campaign interviews with famous names including the rappers Cardi B and Killer Mike, as well as the comedian Hasan Minaj. Cardi B, who backed Sanders when he ran against Hillary Clinton for the Democratic nomination in 2016, has endorsed him again this year publicly supporting the senators proposals to eliminate tuition fees for universities and community colleges and to create a universal healthcare system that is free at the point of service.

Endorsements continue to roll in for Sanders ahead of the Iowa caucuses next month, including from the model Emily Ratajkowski, the actors Chlo Sevigny, John Cusack and Justin Long, Big Little Lies star Shailene Woodley and the actor and campaigner Mark Ruffalo.

Sanders has particularly raked in support from prominent female celebrities including the actors Susan Sarandon, the comedian Sarah Silverman and the singer Ariana Grande.

Ariana Grande (@ArianaGrande)

MY GUY. thank you Senator Sanders for coming to my show, making my whole night and for all that you stand for ! @headcountorg and i are doing our best to make you proud. weve already registered 20k+ young voters at my shows alone. also i will never smile this hard again promise. pic.twitter.com/7UYqkXR0g1

November 20, 2019

But one woman who wont be joining the Bernie bandwagon is former US secretary of state Hillary Clinton. She won the 2016 Democratic presidential nomination after a bitter race against Sanders and felt the Vermont senator did not do enough to persuade his supporters to back her against Trump.

In an upcoming Hulu documentary, Clinton called Sanders a career politician who nobody likes. Stars such as the film-maker Michael Moore and the activist Shaun King who have both stumped for Sanders seem to like him, however, as well as Jack Nicholson, Danny Glover and Danny DeVito.

Danny
Danny DeVito and Bernie Sanders at a rally in St Louis, Missouri, on 13 March 2016. The actor recently endorsed the senator for the 2020 election. Photograph: Michael B. Thomas/AFP/Getty Images

It means the world to me to be on Bernies side because I know thats the right side of history, says DeVito in his endorsement video for Sanders. He is the man to beat Trump, hes the man to change our whole system.

Elizabeth Warren

Slow and steady might win the race for the Massachusetts senator. After an initial spike in polling numbers following her summer TV debate performances, the former public school teacher and law professors climb to the top tier of the 12 remaining Democratic presidential candidates has seen her battle with the former vice-president Joe Biden and Sanders for the lead going into Iowa.

Still, support for Warrens progressive proposals to bring structural change to the US through a billionaire wealth tax, universal healthcare, canceling student loan debt and breaking up big tech companies has gained traction and seen the singer John Legend, the actor Scarlett Johansson (who donated $2,800 to Warrens campaign last year), and the football superstar Megan Rapinoe join the ranks of her supporters.

Im proud to endorse Elizabeth Warren today, for being bold, for being real, for listening to [all] of us, and for being prepared to navigate the unique challenges we face today as a country, Rapinoe tweeted in December.

Add celebrities such as Martin Sheen, Melissa Etheridge, Rosie ODonnell, Chrissy Teigen and Queer Eye star Jonathan Van Ness, and Warrens lineup of notable names rivals Sanders.

We have the fight of our lives on our hands, not just for what we believe in but for the very democracy of this country, said the actor and activist Ashley Judd, stumping for Warren in Iowa last week. Thank God Elizabeth has a plan for everything.

Joe Biden

Though he is widely considered one of the frontrunners, former vice-president Joe Biden lags behind some opponents in generating a celebrity buzz, though he does count Game of Thrones author George RR Martin, the athlete Michelle Kwan and the actors Rob Reiner and Vivica A Fox among supporters.

Tom Hanks and his wife, actor Rita Wilson, have donated to Bidens presidential campaign, but they havent formally endorsed him.

If anybody says so-and-so cannot become president of the United States, drop a rock on their foot, because theyre wrong, he told reporters before last years Kennedy Center Honors in Washington.

Biden has also attracted the support of Michael Avenatti, although he may not want it. The infamous lawyer behind a lawsuit over a hush-money payment to mask Trumps affair with porn star Stormy Daniels is facing his own legal fight over allegations of extortion and tax fraud.

Pete Buttigieg

Buttigiegs list of notable endorsements is about as diverse as his supporters, who are predominantly white. The Afghanistan veteran and former South Bend mayor, who is aiming to become Americas first openly gay president, does have the support of big-name actors however, including comedian Seth MacFarlane and Oscar winners Gwyneth Paltrow (who hosted a fundraiser for him at her California home) and Kevin Costner. Others famous figures include the actors Emmy Rossum, Alan Cumming, Sharon Stone and George Takei.

While prominent, these Hollywood favorites may not help the 38-year-old millennial contender in appealing to the diverse voting blocs that are essential to winning the Democratic presidential nomination.

Andrew Yang

Perhaps one of the most surprising candidates pulling in heavy-hitting celebrity endorsements is the entrepreneur and political novice Andrew Yang, who is currently considered to be lagging behind in the field of candidates.

Although he didnt qualify for the January debate with fellow Democratic candidates, Yangs signature policy proposals universal basic income of monthly $1,000 stipends for every American and an investment in youth entrepreneurship have resonated with the entrepreneur Elon Musk, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, actor and musician Donald Glover and comedian Dave Chappelle.

Other celebrities backing Yang include the actor Nicolas Cage, the comedian Ken Jeong and Weezer frontman Rivers Cuomo.

Amy Klobuchar

The New York Times endorsed the moderate Minnesota senator ahead of the Iowa caucuses alongside Warren, but her candidacy is increasingly considered a long shot, especially as her final push for voters has been hampered by the impeachment trial against Trump that has kept her, Sanders and Warren quietly seated in the Senate chamber in Washington instead of on the campaign trail.

It may come as no surprise, then, that her only celebrity endorsements thus far came from the actor Jane Lynch, as well as James L Brooks and Jeffrey Katzenberg. Klobuchars most notable past supporter, Teri Hatcher, donated to her early in the campaign but later backed Yang.

Mike Bloomberg

Judge Judy, or Judith Sheindlin, thinks former the New York City mayor has just what it takes to lead Democrats in a November blue wave to take back the White House and Senate. But she may be the only one.

Despite a large-scale announcement, loads of cash and an apology tour for past racial profiling, the late-game entry for Bloomberg is also considered a long shot.

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/jan/31/democrats-2020-election-celebrity-endorsements-bernie-sanders-elizabeth-warren

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