Rapper Lupe Fiasco was asked to leave the stage at a Washington, D.C., inaugural party Sunday after an anti-war improvised rant and the admission he didn't vote for President Barack Obama.
Fiasco took the stage at the StartUp RockOn party, doing a politically charged version of his song "Words I Never Said" for 30 minutes straight, according to reporters tweeting
from the scene.
"Limbaugh is a racist, Glenn Beck is a racist," he rapped. "Gaza Strip was getting bombed, Obama didn't say sh*t. That's why I ain't vote for him, next one either."
Fiasco ignored the event promoters when they asked him to move on to a different song, Foreign Policy’s Josh Rogin said.
Eventually, security guards came on stage and whisked him away.
On Twitter on Sunday night, event organizers said they were "disappointed that an artist took opportunity to use an event celebrating innovation/startups to make a political statement."
But an official statement from event organizers on Monday contradicted the tweet.
"Lupe Fiasco performed at this private event, and as you may have read, he left the stage earlier than we had planned. But Lupe Fiasco was not 'kicked off stage' for an 'anti-Obama rant,'" the statement
said. "We are staunch supporters of free speech, and free political speech. This was not about his opinions. Instead, after a bizarrely repetitive, jarring performance that left the crowd vocally dissatisfied, organizers decided to move on to the next act."
The rapper drew criticism in 2011 for calling Obama a terrorist and later appearing on Bill O'Reilly's television show to defend his stance.
"My fight against terrorism, to me, the biggest terrorist is Obama in the United States of America," he said in a June 2011 interview. "I'm trying to fight the terrorism that's actually causing the other forms of terrorism. You know, the root cause of terrorism is the stuff the U.S. government allows to happen. The foreign policies that we have in place in different countries that inspire people to become terrorists."
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