Author, professor and frequent talk-show guest Cornel West is running for president. The activist, who has frequently clashed with the Democratic party on progressive issues (he once called Joe Biden a "neoliberal disaster"), is running as a third-party candidate representing the People's Party. That party was founded by a former Bernie Sanders staffer in 2016.
West made the announcement in a Tweet Monday that has already received more than 15 million views.
In the Tweet West says he's running on a platform of truth and justice with a platform focused on ending poverty, giving women power over their own bodies, stopping wars and mass incarceration, saving the environment and guaranteeing housing, health care, education and living wages for all American citizens.
He went on to accuse both major parties of lying to the American public about major issues; he wants to shake that up. In the past, West has endorsed third-party and Democratic candidates including Bernie Sanders and Ralph Nader, but he's never run for president himself before.
There won't be an easy, automatic ballot place for West. As a third-party candidate he'll need to collect enough signatures in each state and the District of Columbia to even appear on ballots for the 2024 general election.
West has taught at Harvard, Yale and Princeton and was a frequent critic of the Barack Obama administration. As a presidential candidate it's likely West will say exactly what's on his mind without ever holding back. Third-party candidates usually don't fare well in the general election but there are exceptions. Theodore Roosevelt was one and in 1992 Ross Perot arguably helped swing the election in favor of Bill Clinton.