Kid Rock Backs GOP Senate Candidate in Ad as Celebrities Focus on Swing State Michigan

Rap-rocker Kid Rock provides the voiceover in a new campaign ad by John James, a Republican U.S. Senate candidate for Michigan. The "Bawitdaba" singer is one of many celebrities who are targeting voters in the swing state.

The Michigan-born musician, whose real name is Robert James Ritchie, tells voters that they have a chance to "put a real life American bada** in the U.S. Senate, instead of a career politician," referencing his song "American Bad A**."

Ritchie cites James' status as a combat veteran, West Point graduate, and as a "job creator" as reasons to vote for the candidate. He also calls James' opponent, incumbent Senator Gary Peters, a "gaslighter" and "career politician."

War fighter versus Gaslighter. Combat veteran versus career politician. Job creator versus government regulator.

Michigan, are we citizens or subjects?

The choice is yours...

— John James (@JohnJamesMI) October 29, 2020

James "wants to help others create jobs and put Michigan to work. He understands Michigan. We've worked to make our families stronger, get our communities more involved, and help our neighbors first," the Sweet Southern Sugar singer says in the video.

Ritchie has also publicly shown support for President Donald Trump in the lead-up to the election. In a September blog post, he wrote about how important it was to him to be able to attend and participate in a Trump rally in his home state, which the president barely won in 2016.

Ritchie isn't the only celebrity using his platform to sway voters in the swing state. Actor Tim Allen took part in a short campaign ad also encouraging people to vote for James, saying he encapsulates Michigan values. "Michigan: a place where people respect each other, love each other," he said. "That's John James, defending our country, offering a healing hand, creating jobs that matter, doing the job that really matters."

Other celebrities have stepped up for their opposing candidates. Pop superstar Billie Eilish filmed a video shared by Peters encouraging people to go out and vote. "What happens in Michigan could determine our country's future," she said. "Please stay safe. Wear a mask. Please Vote."

Young people are going to determine the outcome of this election and @BillieEilish knows we all need to do two things:
1. Wear a mask.
2. Vote.

Make a plan at:

— Gary Peters (@GaryPeters) October 27, 2020

Peters shared a similar video of Cuz I Love You singer Lizzo telling people how to vote. In the clip, she showed support for Peters and former Vice President Joe Biden's campaign. "We need to elect Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and Gary Peters to bring our country together," she says in the video before explaining how local residents can vote.

Voting has never been easier in Detroit, Lizzo’s hometown.

Make sure you vote because, just like @Lizzo says, Michigan is going to decide the future of this country.

Make a plan:

— Gary Peters (@GaryPeters) October 30, 2020

The Comey Rule actor Jeff Daniels took part in a more generalized ad, encouraging local voters to join him in electing Biden. In the video, Daniels lists a number of Michigan values. "In Michigan, we don't pound our chests and blow our own horns; we just get the job done," he says. "We take responsibility."

The actor then pivots to list criticisms of Trump. "Here in Michigan, we don't believe in paying off porn stars to keep their mouths shut about who we really are, and we don't think much of a man who disrespects women," he says. "In fact, we don't think he's much of a man at all."

At the end of the video, Daniels says that he voted for Biden as the hashtag #AmericaNeedsMichigan appears.

Newsweek reached out to the John James campaign and Kid Rock's label for comment but did not receive a response in time for publication.

Kid Rock
Kid Rock (left) and Donald Trump Jr. speak onstage during the Trump 2020 rally on September 14 in Harrison, Michigan. Getty/Scott Legato