Arcade Fire PR 2010

Wyclef Jean announced that he was running for president of Haiti at the beginning of the month. Since then a few problems have come up: there are questions about his Haitian residency (you have to have lived in the country for five years to run for president), his cousin (and Fugees member) Pras has endorsed another candidate, and there are still questions about where the money from his Haiti charity went. Yesterday Pitchfork quoted Win Butler (who was speaking on Sirius XMU) on the situation:

Technically, [Wyclef Jean] shouldn’t be eligible because he hasn’t been a resident of Haiti. And I think him not speaking French and not being fluent in Creole would be a really major issue in trying to run a really complex government, like the government in Haiti. It would kind of be like Arnold Schwarzenegger only speaking Austrian and being elected President of the United States after New York City and L.A. had burned to the ground…I think he is a great musician and he really passionately cares about Haiti. I really hope he throws his support behind someone who is really competent and really eligible.

… That’s a measured answer, considering that others have called Jean “the Sarah Palin of Haiti.”

Arcade Fire’s Haitian ties are, arguably, just as strong as Jean’s. And, as Sound Of The City points out, the band has donated a dollar (or pound or euro) of every ticket sale to charity, resulting in about $800,000 in donations. The money they got from the NFL for licensing “Wake Up” went to a charity that runs hospitals outside of Port-au-Prince. They’ve also started matching audience donations to Haiti. So they’ve got a stake in this.

UPDATE: According to Reuters, an official says Jean won’t be on the list of approved candidates that they play to release on Friday.

[Photo by Eric Kayne]

Comments (16)
  1. “It would kind of be like Arnold Schwarzenegger only speaking Austrian,” or any other language that doesn’t exist.

  2. Arnold speaks only one language: pain.

  3. The Voice Of The Douche Generation.

  4. plus, if he were president, he’d be elected on friday, assassinated on saturday, and buried on sunday. what about that wyclef? huh?!

  5. Uh, Win, people in Austria speak german, not austrian.

  6. I got a pocket full of cheese and a garden full of trees…


  7. i can’t believe someone as worldly as an Arcade Fire member would say SPEAK AUSTRIAN! aren’t they supposed to be canadian or something?

  8. I didnt know win butler ‘s wife was black. that explains her hair. she doesn’t look perky enough to be a high yellow tho : p . I think if you asked an average Haitian who they had more in common with they probably would say Jean. lots of Europeans have lived in many places in the third world a few generations then taken the money and “immigrated.”They easily became Americans or Europeans again with no problem, something you cant say about the poor of the places they colonized. if anything means anything that doesn’t mean much.

  9. Could Wayne Coyne be reached for comment?

  10. he’s a human being just like anyone else, who cares if he said Austrian instead of German, we all make mistakes people! he still came out with a hell of an album this year.

  11. Interested news provided here so I like this details here so love this..

  12. Sooo…Win Butler for President?

  13. very interested new. i like it very much. Friends i wanna say something.!
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