On the campaign trail in 2016, Donald Trump slammed then-Virginia governor Terry McAuliffe’s proposed order to re-enfranchise convicted felons, describing it as a move to get “thousands of violent felons to the voting booths in effort to cancel out the votes of both law enforcement and crime victims” in support of Hillary Clinton. Meanwhile, Kim Kardashian West has embarked on a four-year law apprenticeship with a stated goal of taking the bar in 2022, a career pivot ignited by her recent forays into criminal justice reform and, more specifically, her efforts to reduce sentences for women like Alice Marie Johnson and Cyntoia Brown.
So here’s where these two seemingly divergent interests meet (aside from on reality television): at the White House. On Thursday, Kardashian West visited Washington to discuss her latest pet project, a partnership with Lyft to dole out ride credits to formerly incarcerated individuals to transport them to and from job interviews.
“Today, I’m honored to be a part of the announcement that the administration and the private sector are stepping up to create opportunities for these men and women to succeed once home,” she wrote on Twitter. “Proud to partner on this initiative with @Lyft, a company with a history of taking bold action to do what’s right for our community.” (Lyft has positioned itself as “woke Uber”—it allowed riders to tip drivers before Uber offered that option; there was a well-timed ACLU donation in the midst of Trump’s refugee ban—but Peter Thiel is an investor and, in 2017, it reduced driver compensation in order to compete with Uber, according to the Guardian.)
At the White House—where Kardashian showed up in a Vetements ensemble and carrying an Hermès bag whose value Page Six placed at $69,775, her hair in a shoulder-length, center-parted lob—she sat between Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, who, according to the New Yorker, turned into an unexpected advocate for the First Step bill, a piece of legislation with bipartisan support aimed at reducing sentences for a variety of offenses. She also met Mississippi governor Phil Bryant, who, in addition to supporting criminal justice reform, has also been outspoken in support of his state’s (now suspended) heartbeat bill; she went on to thank him on Twitter.
Of course, this is not the first time Kardashian has visited the White House over matters of criminal justice. She petitioned Donald Trump to grant clemency to Alice Marie Johnson, with a meeting arranged by Kushner himself. And all that, even though she publicly called out the criticism-averse president for his approach (or lack thereof) to gun control, her other cause célèbre. And despite her work on the subject, it bears repeating: It shouldn't take Kim Kardashian, reality star, to see a little justice in the criminal justice system. It shouldn't even take Kim Kardashian, emerging lawyer.
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