Why Aaron Carter, Pop Singer and First-Time Voter, Is Supporting Donald Trump

Pop star Aaron Carter admits Donald Trump "might have some twisted views on some things," but says he is still standing behind the GOP frontrunner. From left: David Becker/Getty Images; Jerod Harris/Getty Images for GBK Production

Donald Trump recently secured a coveted endorsement in his embattled presidential campaign: Aaron Carter.

The former teen icon and pop singer behind "Aaron's Party" and "That's How I Beat Shaq" tweeted his support for Trump a week ago:

Trump support is scarce in the music world, so Carter's tweet drew an immediate reaction: angry tweets, dozens of headlines, even death threats. Later, spurious reports circulated that Carter was withdrawing his support for the orange-haired billionaire. Not so, Carter says. In a March 3 conversation with Newsweek, Carter conceded that Trump "might have some twisted views on some things" but reaffirmed his support. In a comprehensive interview (which we've edited a bit for length), he explains why he likes—and identifies with—Trump.

You said last week you were voting for Donald Trump. Is that accurate?
Yeah, that's still accurate, yes.

Can you explain why you plan to vote for him?
At this point in my life, I'm just becoming really involved in politics and understanding business. Growing up in the industry that I did, it's very easy to lose sight of money and being able to have a livelihood for yourself. I filed for bankruptcy before.... So I understand Donald Trump has filed bankruptcy four times. We have a $200 trillion deficit. And I'm in a 40 percent tax bracket now with the money that I make. So I'm a moderate Republican, you know?

Donald Trump has come under fire for comments he has made about wanting to block Muslims from entering the country. Does any of that make you nervous?
I do not stand by that. I don't know why anyone in their right mind would stand by that. I don't understand the concept behind that. If I was to sit [with] Donald Trump, I would say: "Why are you doing that?" And I would probably be able to give you some sort of answer. Because I know the gay community. I have fans that are all over the world. I came under fire and I got over 100,000 tweets in, like, a few hours. It was trending on every social media site you can think of in just a few hours over one statement. If people are listening to me like that, then obviously I have some sort of impact on our youth and people are paying attention. But a lot of the kids that are attacking don't know what they're talking about. Then they were accusing me of being a white supremacist and KKK and all of this. And death threats.

You got death threats as a result of that statement?
Of course.

What were some of the reactions like?
They were saying they were going to stab me with needles. And they hope I got shot. Sending people to come kill me.

That doesn't scare me, though, because if anyone had a legitimate conversation with me, you'd find out that I'm actually intellectual and I'm very smart and I'm very educated. My heritage is very, very amazing. I'm actually a true descendant of America. My grandfather was a genealogist for 45 years and found out that I am traced back to the 1622 Plymouth, Massachusetts [colony]. I come from the Mayflower heritage. I'm a part of the Sons of the American Revolution and the Daughters of the American Revolution. I have been here since America started in my family. I feel like the Mayflower journey, the saying "Only the strong survive" comes from that journey. And you know what? I am a part of that bloodline, and my family and my bloodline has been here since the pilgrims and the Indians met up. So, that's who I am.

Donald Trump
Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks about the results of Super Tuesday primary and caucus voting during a news conference in Palm Beach, Florida March 1, 2016. Scott Audette/Reuters

But do you stand with Trump's comments about immigration and blocking Muslim entry?
No. I don't stand by that. It's not fair to take away that and deport families and create these kinds of things. It's just not right. And obviously these kinds of things are going to go down. But I can see that [Trump] is a driven man and he likes to do things his own way. That's why I said, do we want a president that follows or do we want a president that leads? I vote Donald Trump. And does that mean that America has the right to slander me and attack me and call me a meth head and make fun of me and tell me I'm not relevant? Well, apparently I am relevant because you're all talking abut me. You're tweeting me. You're doing this.

Have any other musicians shot back or made comments to you?
Naw. They haven't. They just kind of are like, "OK." But you know what? Maybe they're not educated. Or maybe I'm not educated enough. Or maybe I stick by Donald Trump but I don't approve of everything he does. Why can't I be like that? Isn't that what politics is?

You haven't heard any reactions to your comments in the music community?
No! Pretty much anyone that is associated with me—and I mean everyone—is going to be voting for Donald Trump.

Including your family members and your brother?
I mean, I'm not gonna speak for them.

The music business tends to be pretty left-leaning, politically.
Well, you know what? A lot of people want to hide how they feel. I am different.

Have you been a supporter of the Republican Party in the past?
No! I've been a Democrat. But if you go back a ton, Democrats and Republicans were reversed in the early 1900s. Or maybe it was the late 1800s, but they were reversed.

But during your lifetime, you've voted Democrat?
I've never voted before. This will be my first vote. I was too young. I was too young to vote for Obama. I was too young to vote for Bush.

You were too young to vote for Obama?
Yeah. I think I was 19. Or 17 or something.

Have you favored the Republican Party before?
To be honest, I haven't really paid attention to it. I didn't really care that much. And you know what? The crazy thing is, when all the 9/11 stuff [happened], I saw the World Trade Centers get hit with the planes with my own eyes. I was in New York City. I was opening up for Michael Jackson in Madison Square Garden, September 10. We left the morning of September 11. Michael had invited me and Macaulay Culkin to an amusement park with him in a private limousine. That limousine got a flat tire. We pulled over across from the Hudson River. I was looking at the towers and I watched it get hit with my own eyes. So I've seen some crazy things in my life.

Is there anything else you'd like to say on the subject of your Trump support?
I mean, I'm not going to rescind [support]. But at the same time, I'm going to make sure that I stand my ground. And I stand my ground into things that I don't support about Donald Trump. That's really important. There's always room for growth. and who knows? When he becomes the president, which I think he will be, and makes our country a better place, maybe they'll thank him then.

Thank you for taking the time to talk about this.
And make sure you say my single is dropping April Fools' Day. April Fools' Day is my first single in over 10 years. I produced it, I wrote it, I own my masters, doing it all myself. That's why I like Donald Trump, too. Because he does stuff himself. He pays for his own way. Well, guess what? I pay for my own way, too! I produce my beats, I write my songs, I fly my planes, I pay for my campaign. We do the same kind of thing. So that's why I respect him.