Song: "New Day" (2011)
Album: Watch the Throne
Conscious Or Ign'ant?: Conscious

Ah, 2011. As Barack Obama's re-election cycle kicked into high gear, Republican references in rap songs hit an all-time high. GOP hopeful Willard "Mitt" Romney became a surprisingly potent symbol within hip-hop. On one hand, he embodied the billion-dollar aspirations that had long since become hip-hop's guiding principle; on the other hand, he was the stiffest, whitest and least-rapper-friendly human being on the planet. Watch the Throne was an album about how and where rappers fit into Romney's world. This conversation came so easy to Kanye that he didn't have to get angry: he was cracking jokes about the true meaning of the Republican platform. In the end he saw through the Republican brand for what it really was: an emblem of white complacency masquerading as economic self-determination. Conservative are less threatening only because they advocate less change. Guys like Romney can advocate for less change only because they are white.