Taylor Swift dominates Super Bowl spotlight as conspiracies about her political influence flourish

It has been a big few weeks for Taylor Swift. The singer kicked off the week with a historic win at the Grammys, taking home the night's biggest prize for the fourth time, and dropped the exciting news that she had a new album on the way. But it was her latest romantic gesture that has caught the attention of the world.

Swift has been rumoured to have a new boyfriend, with reports suggesting she has been spotted attending Kansas City Chiefs games to support her man, who is reportedly tight end Travis Kelce. The couple (which Swift has yet to publicly confirm) are set to collide with another milestone moment when Kelce takes to the field in this year's Super Bowl. It's expected Swift will jump on a private jet straight from her final Tokyo show to make it to the big game, where she'll likely be the most prominent figure in attendance.

But the prospect of Swift and her star power being in the audience has also ignited speculation about whether she will throw her support behind Joe Biden in this year's US election. There are also growing rumours she could deploy some of her star power in the battle for the White House. Conspiracists on the right have peddled theories that Swift's relationship with Kelce is part of an elaborate plot to rig football games and deliver Biden the presidency.

There is no evidence to indicate the Super Bowl is rigged in Kansas City's favour, and no proof that Swift and Kelce's relationship is artificially propped up. But the swirl of intrigue around Swift started around the same time reports surfaced that the Biden campaign may be courting the singer for her support. Swift endorsed Biden in 2020 and with the US election shaping up to be a re-run of Biden versus Trump this year, there is a possibility she could be leaning the same way again.

Taylor Swift's cultural power and influence has only grown in the years since the last election, sparking fears among Republicans over the singer's powerful fan base at this year's vote. "Taylor Swift represents the Achilles heel for Donald Trump in the 2024 election because she represents the group of suburban, generally white, women and their daughters," Wendy Schiller, a professor of political science at Brown University, said.

But the increasing attacks on Swift have done little to dent her reputation. Unlike in 2016, when Swift retreated from the spotlight following intense online backlash and high-profile feuds with Calvin Harris, Kanye West and Kim Kardashian, Swift now appears to be too big for a small army of trolls to tear her down.