Rapper Rhymefest Running For Chicago City Council

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October 20, 2010 | 6:15pm EST

Kanye West’s rapper pal Rhymefest has formally entered the race for political office in his native Chicago, Illinois.
The hip-hop star, real name Che Smith, is bidding to become an alderman for the 20th Ward at the Chicago City Council and he has now officially announced his candidacy.

In a series of posts on his Twitter.com page, he wrote, “It’s already starting! I talk about helping my community and the villains are attacking my character and family! I won’t stop!

“The 20th Ward in Chicago needs help, shorties (women) are out here selling dope to pay the family bills. Grandmothers are raising their children’s children, people are unemployed and under employed & leadership is absent.”

Rhymefest, who co-wrote West’s chart hit Jesus Walks, is set to hold a press conference detailing his political run on Thursday.

He will go up against current alderman Willie Cochran, a former police officer with 26 years of service to his name, for the position when the elections take place in February 2011.

Rhymefest isn’t the only rapper to turn to politics this year – Wyclef Jean attempted to run for President of Haiti this summer but was eliminated from the race after failing to satisfy residency rules.