His power-manager Scooter Braun had big problems with the offer.
TMZ reports that Justin Bieber was offered $5 million to perform at a Republican, but “non-political,” event in Cleveland during the GOP Convention. This would have been Bieber’s biggest pay-day in his career, but he ultimately turned it down at the urging of his manager Scooter Braun (who is a Hillary Clinton supporter).
Braun, who also manages Kanye West, had initially used a light hand in influencing Bieber on the decision. While they were told it had no real affiliation with the Convention, Bieber’s request to perform in front of Black Lives Matter banners was turned down (they suggested All Lives Matter banners, instead) and he was instructed to not saying anything negative about the Republican Party.
Had he chosen to do the show, Braun would have ended his relationship with Bieber. TMZ writes: “We’re told Justin it was up to him if he wanted to do the show, but he said he couldn’t continue to represent the singer if he did, out of principle. Scooter felt the GOP was using Bieber as its tool.”
Bieber is Canadian, so he doesn’t have a stake in this election, but it still influential to millions of his fans and affects the people he works with. According to TMZ, most of Bieber’s band is black and “did not want to do the show.”
LeBron James, who plays for the Cleveland Cavaliers, was also dangled in front of Bieber and Braun as a reason to do the event. They were told that James would be welcoming the GOP at an event but would not be taking a political stance: “The sources tell us Justin’s people got in touch with LeBron’s people, and they were told LeBron would actually not be in Cleveland for the convention and urged Justin not to go, as well.”