Indian American Republican presidential hopeful Vivek Ramaswamy has agreed to comply with Oscar-winning rapper Eminem’s request to stop using his works on the campaign trail.
“I’ll respect his wishes, but I would just say: ‘Will The Real Slim Shady please stand up?,’” Ramaswamy told MSNBC Tuesday spinning the decision into his campaign’s messaging that rails against the political establishment.
“Eminem and his rise used to be a guy who actually stood up to the establishment and said the things that the establishment didn’t want him to say,” he added.
“I think the fact that my political viewpoints may differ from his, I think people change over the course of their lives.”
Eminem sent a cease-and-desist letter to Ramaswamy’s campaign last Wednesday demanding the candidate stop performing his music.
Ramaswamy rapped along to “Lose Yourself” to conclude his appearance at the Iowa State Fair in mid-August.
Eminem’s representation and BMI both confirmed to Variety that a letter was sent to Ramaswamy’s campaign lawyer on Aug 23, “objecting to the campaign’s use of Eminem’s musical compositions.”
“To the American people’s chagrin, we will have to leave the rapping to the real slim shady,” Tricia McLaughlin, a spokesperson for the Ramaswamy campaign, told NBC News on Monday.
Ramaswamy has been performing the rapper’s work for years. A 2006 feature on Ramaswamy in The Harvard Crimson noted he often went by alter ego “Da Vek” when he took on a rap-inspired persona.
And 2002’s “Lose Yourself” is reportedly Ramaswamy’s favorite song to walk out to at campaign events. He considered it his life’s theme song, according to the Crimson, and thought “children should be forced to listen to it.”
Eminem has been an outspoken critic of Ramaswamy’s political idol and Republican candidate, Donald Trump, and he’s aligned himself with liberal causes in recent years.
So it’s not all that surprising that he’d want to distance himself from Ramaswamy, who appears to have fashioned his campaign after Trump’s.