Marsha Blackburn: I've reached out to Taylor Swift to meet and discuss our differences

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DALLAS–Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., has repeatedly reached out to singer Taylor Swift since 2018 to meet and discuss their differences but they haven’t gotten together, she said Saturday, as she followed up on recent remarks that Swift would be one of the “first victims” of a socialist regime.

Speaking with Fox News at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), Blackburn reiterated her statements from an earlier interview with Breitbart News, in which she said Swift would be the first to be canceled if “Marxism” were implemented across the country. She called on celebrities, corporations, and figures on the left to redirect their attention away from cancelling other Americans and towards the behavior and mistreatment of people by the Chinese Communist Party.

When asked if her specific reference to Swift was because of the singer’s criticism of her during the 2018 campaign, Blackburn clarified it wasn’t, and that the topic came up in the interview because she was discussing responses by celebrities and corporations to the actions of the CCP.

“I think she’s incredibly talented. We’re fortunate that Nashville is the center of her creative universe,” Blackburn said of Swift. “What we talked about was that it is entertainers like Taylor Swift that would be the first victims of a socialist, Marxist regime because they do not allow freedom of expression or freedom of speech. They clamp down on that. They tell you what you’re going to sing and what you’re going to say. How you’re going to act. They’re in charge.”

Asked about her efforts to meet with Swift, she told Fox she would “work with anyone who wants to improve the lives of Tennesseans.” Swift came off the political sidelines in 2018 to sharply criticize Blackburn and endorse her Democratic opponent Phil Bredesen, causing a media frenzy, particularly from liberals who had long strangely suspected her of being a secret Donald Trump supporter.

Blackburn went on to slam the media’s coverage of conservatives compared to celebrities, and blamed pressure from the left as the cause for celebrities and corporations to push policies further from what people actually believe.

“Well what [the media] will do is shame conservatives … and they praise [celebrities] for being woke,” Blackburn said. “And you see this in corporations who have felt the pressure from those on the left, who are pushing for policies that they feel lead these corporations further left in diversity, equity, inclusion, and then all of a sudden people go ‘hey, wait a minute, this is not what I believe.'”

“I mean Nike is a great example. [They] put out a statement that they are ‘of China and for China’ … Are they saying that they are for this Communist regime that is carrying out a genocide? … Or that is taking intellectual property rights? So you can’t have it both ways,” she added, before suggesting that celebrities, corporations and the media should instead be criticizing the Chinese Communist Party for their intellectual property theft, treatment of the Uighur population and handling of the coronavirus. 

Blackburn also told Fox News that she would always be willing to work with celebrities, including Swift, to protect their intellectual property rights from future threats.

“I welcome any further opportunities to work with Tennessee’s, and the nation’s, creative communities to protect intellectual property and ensure appropriate compensation for their creations,” she said.

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