August 6, 2020

Meet Kanye West’s presidential running mate, Michelle Tidball

[New York Post]

The world may be long familiar with rap superstar Kanye West, but not many know his vice presidential running mate, Michelle Tidball.

Tidball is a 57-year-old spiritual coach who, like West, lives on a ranch in Cody, Wyoming, and has a deep religious background.

Since she was tapped as the billionaire sneaker mogul’s VP pick, multiple pages from Tidball’s website for her nonprofit Bible study program, called Abundant Ministries, have been taken down.

Those pages included her biography, in which she says she has pursued God since she was 6 months old, when she says she was “slipping away into a crib death” before a higher power visited her “in a hospital tent” and saved her life.

Tidball says she aims to help “people get ‘unstuck’ in their lives using biblical principles and wisdom.”

The website also says Tidball served as an executive director of Bright Futures Mentoring Program, a Cody-based student mentorship program.

“My Heart has always been to walk in maturity and to bring other’s maturity to be about His business and see the completion of things He mandated before the foundations of the world.

“I look forward to bringing the word with experience and practical counsel on walking as mature adopted sons manifested upon this earth,” her now-removed biography closed.

Tidball touted on the now-deleted page that she has “various degrees in mental health and criminal justice.”

Kanye West WireImage

The only known degree she has, however, is a bachelor’s in psychology from the University of Wyoming in 2003, according to TMZ. Her biography stated that she worked as a mental health therapist for 10 years before shifting to life coaching.

In a now-deleted Bible teleconference from June 2017, also obtained by the outlet, Tidball suggested that one’s mental illness could be handled by completing domestic chores.

“If you would get up every day and make your bed and do your dishes — you would be better,” she said, adding that in her 10 years of working with people with mental illness, none did the dishes or made their beds.

In that same teleconference, she said she doesn’t “watch news.”

Tidball has not publicly discussed having any other careers, though The New Yorker reports that she also works in a dental office.

Mary L. Keller, a religious studies scholar at the University of Wyoming and a high school classmate of Tidball, told the magazine, “Michelle was the bubbly, charismatic cheerleader.”

Keller also called the vice presidential candidate smart, adding, “I think she knows Hebrew pretty well.” Her website for Abundant Ministries is filled with Hebrew, including the website name: Yarash.

Yarash means “to seize, to take possession” or “inherit” in Hebrew.

In 2016, Keller and Tidball ran a youth group together, where Tidball described herself as an “online prophet.”

“We went out for drinks, and she told me about this international group of people who are in touch with the divine and discuss it with each other,” Keller said.

Tidball also allegedly told her that she had predicted Donald Trump’s victory.

“To her, his election was evidence,” she said.

Tidball has an active, albeit unpopular Twitter page. She has retweeted 18 campaign announcements to her 369 followers since her page became active, though she has not personally tweeted anything.

When West made headlines in mid-July after his controversial South Carolina rally, Tidball made a rare personal statement to the Daily Mail, assuring the outlet that the rapper was “just fine.”

It is not clear if the spiritual life coach will be taking on a more public role with the campaign at any point.

By Emily Jacobs

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