On Monday, Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear (D) singled out one of his state's residents for gumming up unemployment claims by filing one under the name "Tupac Shakur."
"We had somebody apply for unemployment for Tupac Shakur here in Kentucky," Beshear had said. "That person probably thought they were being funny, they probably did — except for the fact that because of them, we've got to go through so many other claims, and one person thinking that they were funny, using somebody else's identity, is going to make tens of thousands … of other people wait."
As a result, the governor apologized to the non-famous/still alive Shakur in public and private, and also had a spokesman (Sebastian Kitchen) explain what happened.
“The governor was advised that a fraudulent claim had been filed in the name of Tupac Shakur. It now appears that a Kentuckian by that name has filed a claim," Kitchen said to The Louisville Courier Journal. "This morning, Gov. Beshear called Mr. Shakur to apologize. The Office of Unemployment Insurance is working to resolve the claim.”
The Kentucky resident, whose claim was legit, is an out-of-work 46-year-old cook who had been employed at a pair of restaurants before they were forced to close due to the coronavirus pandemic. He had been calling the state to wonder why his claim hadn't gone through, and it was at that point he learned it was because those in the education and workforce department cabinet believed it was bogus.
On Tuesday morning, Shakur (who goes by his middle name of Malik) received a call from Beshear, who apologized.
The governor followed up on that later in the day when, during a press conference, he apologized again and offered thanks to Shakur because he was "so kind" during their phone conversation.
“I owe somebody an apology tonight," Beshear said. "Last night I spent a little bit of time talking about fraudulent claims holding us up. I mentioned an individual that filed in the name of Tupac Shakur. I didn’t know, and it’s my fault, that we have a Kentuckian who goes by Malik whose name is Tupac Shakur. I talked to him on the phone today, I apologized. I told him how it happened, but I owned it. It’s my fault. He was gracious. I said I’m sorry if I embarrassed him or caused him any attention he didn’t want. He was very kind.”
As for Shakur, he went the forgiveness route. "I understand, he’s dealing with a lot," he said of the governor after the call took place. "Mistakes happen.”