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Watch out, Clint: Why Snoop Dogg got political at TIFF

Rapper and actor Snoop Lion attends a news conference to promote the film ' Reincarnated ' during the 37th Toronto International Film Festival, September 7, 2012.

FRED THORNHILL/REUTERS

One wonders what would have happened if Snoop Dog (a.k.a. Snoop Lion) had been in that chair next to Clint Eastwood at the Republican National Convention.

The rapper-turned-reggae-artist brashly and colourfully spoke out in favour of the incumbent U.S. commander-in-chief Barack Obama during a press conference for the new film Reincarnated, a feature documentary charting Snoop's recent excellent Jamaican adventure that involved the recording of a reggae album and the embrace of the Rastafarian faith.

"I mean Bush [screwed] up for eight years," Snoop said, explaining that the former president's troubled double-term reign should afford Obama at least the same tenure.

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The streetwise star contended that the reign of George W. Bush had unfairly saddled the incoming Obama administration with a desperate state of affairs. "It ain't like y'all gave him a clean house," explained Snoop, all in white, from toe to tam. "Y'all gave him a house where the TV didn't work, the toilet was stuffed up – everything was wrong with the house."

Snoop's references were, of course, metaphorical. Outgoing presidents are not responsible for White House janitorial or maintenance matters. Also, Snoop's use of the plural second-person pronoun "Y'all" was curious, given that the number of registered Republican voters in the packed room would have been minimal.

The marijuana advocate and former drug-dealing hustler – once dubbed "America's most adorable pimp" by Rolling Stone magazine – said he believed himself to be the reincarnated spirit of reggae icon Bob Marley. Perhaps in his next life, Snoop will be reborn as a political satirist. One way or another, he'll have his audience rolling in the aisles.

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About the Author

Brad Wheeler is an arts reporter with The Globe and Mail. More

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