On Saturday, Katy Perry fired up a crowd of Hillary Clinton supporters at a presidential campaign event in Des Moines, IA. The concert included performances of “Roar,” “America the Beautiful,” and “Firework.” It also contained a message of empowerment aimed at young, eligible voters. "How many of you are going to be 18 next year, before November?" Perry asked the crowd, according to Billboard. "Are you going to vote? Because you know you have the power, right?”
"Listen, you have so much power and this is going to be one of the most important elections in over a decade," Perry continued. "So much change can happen. Let’s go, Hillary!” She strutted across the stage with a red-and-blue turban, a white dress — fitted with the Clinton campaign’s “H” logo — and an American flag cape. Right before the current Democratic presidential candidate joined her on stage, Perry shouted to the crowd, “She’s my firework!”
That support was reciprocated by Bill Clinton, who introduced Perry before her performance and tweeted a photo with her that was captioned, "Great to be in Iowa with Hillary Clinton & be the warmup act for Katy Perry.” Both President Clinton and candidate Clinton used the hashtags #HillYes and #Roar with their tweets about Katy Perry’s Iowa performance. Perry’s show of support also found her taking over Hillary Clinton’s Instagram account for the evening. She posted photos of her Hillary 2016 manicure, meetings with Clinton volunteers, and a few selfies with the former secretary of state, including one with a caption reading, “#ImWithHer.”
In addition to her social media blitz, Perry also recorded a 5:30 a.m. wake-up phone call for Clinton’s Iowa organizers, reports the Associated Press. In the automated call, Perry said, “Wake-y, wake-y! Eggs and bakey. It's Katy Perry here. I know it's early, but you know what they say, the early bird gets the votes." If this all seems like a surprising show for a pop star, we'd like to remind you that Katy Perry is no stranger to politics. In 2012, she performed at several pro-Obama campaign rallies, including one in Milwaukee, days before the election, where she wore a voting-ballot dress.
Perry also was an outspoken supporter of the Affordable Care Act, so much so that President Obama tweeted her his thanks. And as far back as 2008, Perry has used her stage time to shine a spotlight on candidate Obama. Remember when she donned an Obama-themed sequined dress while hosting the MTV European Music Awards? Perry isn’t the only celebrity to use their pop star status to round up votes, but so far, Perry is the only pop star of her ilk to make this level of public appearance on behalf of any candidate in the 2016 election. Beyoncé and Jay Z threw campaign fundraisers for the Obamas in 2008 and 2012. Beyoncé not only performed during Obama’s first inaugural dance and at his second inauguration, but she regularly appears in support of First Lady Michelle Obama’s political initiatives. When the Beyoncés and Katy Perrys of the world do use their platform for a political message, it sends a powerful message to their large, engaged, and young fanbases.
On Saturday, Perry didn’t just ask voters to pick an issue or pick a candidate. She also made a statement. Perhaps none greater than with her birthday gift to Hillary Clinton: A gold necklace that read “POTUS.” “My birthday gift to a fellow Scorpio, Hillary, says it all,” Perry wrote on Clinton’s Instagram. Indeed, it did.