Pop superstar Taylor Swift has admitted she is “very remorseful” about her refusal to get involved in the 2016 presidential election, but has pledged to “do everything I can for 2020” to promote progressive candidates and public policy.
The 29-year-old singer came under criticism for refusing to take sides in the 2016 presidential race, leading many to falsely believe she was a Republican.
“I was just trying to protect my mental health — not read the news very much, go cast my vote, tell people to vote,” Taylor Swift said in an interview with The Guardian published Friday. “I just knew what I could handle and I knew what I couldn’t. I was literally about to break.”
The Grammy-winner went on to say that her perceived negative public image at the time made her feel “just useless” and more a “like a hindrance.” However, she now feels “really remorseful for not saying anything” and confirmed she would have endorsed Hillary Clinton. When asked about efforts by Tennesee lawmakers to restrict access to abortion services, Swift confirmed she was pro-choice and would “do everything I can for 2020.”
Swift made similar comments in an interview with Vogue earlier this month, admitting she feared that it would not help her and the media would portray the pair as “the two nasty women.”
“Unfortunately in the 2016 election, you had a political opponent who was weaponizing the idea of the celebrity endorsement. He was going around saying, I’m a man of the people. I’m for you. I care about you. I just knew I wasn’t going to help,” she said at the time.
“Also, you know, the summer before that election, all people were saying was She’s calculated. She’s manipulative. She’s not what she seems. She’s a snake. She’s a liar,” she continued. “These are the same exact insults people were hurling at Hillary.”
Swift broke her political silence in the run-up to the 2018 midterm elections when she endorsed Democratic candidate Phil Bredesen over Republican Marsha Blackburn in Tennesee’s Senate election. The singer also decried America’s “systematic racism” against people of color and smeared Blackburn as being unwilling to “fight for dignity for ALL Americans, no matter their skin color, gender or who they love.”
Last week, the “Shake It Off” singer also sought to boost her progressive credentials by echoing demands for the rectification of the fictitious “gender pay gap” for America’s female soccer stars.
“While they were winning the World Cup, they were also taking a historic stand in terms of gender equality [and the] gender pay gap,” Swift said of the women’s team while accepting the Icon Award at the Teen Choice Awards. “Please, please, please support her and her teammates because this isn’t over yet. It’s not resolved.”