Jon Kopaloff/WireImage Rebecca Black
In a video uploaded to TikTok on Tuesday, Black recalled when she accepted an offer from a "distant" relative to receive the keys to a small Mexican city — and the opportunity turned out to be a sneaky endorsement of controversial then-presidential candidate Enrique Peña Nieto, who was later elected into office.
"One thing about me is my mom [Georgina Marquez Kelly] is a Mexican immigrant, and when I was 14 years old she got hit up by a distant family relative who told her there was a Rebecca Black fan club in this small town in Mexico, and they also wanted to give me the keys to the city," said Black, 25, in the video, soundtracked by Nicki Minaj's "Super Freaky Girl."
She said they quickly accepted the offer and embarked on a plane to Mexico, where they showed up to a meet-and-greet — or so they were told. "They take us to some big fancy house, and then they usher us into a room full of men in suits. I meet them all," recalled Black, who said she was then taken into another room with "an audience of about 20 people" wearing matching t-shirts.
"They sit me and my mom in front of the step-and-repeat with a table and microphones. It kind of looks like a press conference, and my mom is next to me acting as my translator," she continued. "People in the crowd start asking me questions, like, 'How do you like Mexico?' and 'How do you feel about voting rights?' and 'How do you feel about the presidential candidate of Mexico?' at the time."
Despite being uninformed about Mexico's political landscape at the time, Black answered the questions in fear of getting further ridiculed on the internet following the backlash she received at age 13 for the viral song "Friday."
"So, I'm like, 'Yeah, great. He's great. Voting's great. I'm sure it'll all be great,' not really knowing what I'm talking about," she said.
After boarding a return flight to the US with her mother, Black realized she never received the keys to the city. "I'm scrolling on Twitter before the flight takes off, and I start seeing headlines about me and how I have endorsed the presidential candidate of Mexico at the time," she said.
"And then I realize that my entire family was just scammed by this distant relative who worked for his presidential campaign into endorsing the presidential candidate of Mexico at the time. And the world thinks I've done it as a 14-year-old when I've never heard of this man in my life," concluded Black's TikTok video.
At the time, Nieto won the election and served as Mexico's 64th president from December 2012 to November 2018. During his time in office, Nieto faced criticism for a series of failed policies, earned low approval ratings and was accused of plagiarizing his law thesis.
In August, the Mexican Attorney General's Office launched investigations against Nieto after he was accused by the nation's anti-money laundering agency of handling millions of potentially illegal dollars, per The Independent.
Since Black's initial wave of internet fame — and seemingly ill-advised career decisions — she's earned success as a YouTuber and released an acclaimed EP, 2021's Rebecca Black Was Here, as well as a remix of "Friday" featuring 3OH!3, Big Freedia and Dorian Electra in celebration of the novelty hit's 10th anniversary.