Clay Aiken for Congress

Several sources including the Hill and USA Today say Aiken is seriously considering a run for the 2nd District seat now held by Renee Ellmers:

Will Clay Aiken be adding "congressman" to his résumé?

The American Idol runner-up is said to be "actively considering" a bid for Congress in North Carolina's 2nd District, according to a report in The Washington Blade. The seat is currently held by GOP Rep. Renee Ellmers, who first won the seat long held by a Democrat in 2010.

--USA Today


Aside from my distaste for reality tv,

I also have an innate reluctance to support actors/pop singers/professional wrestlers who decide to pursue elected positions, because the political arena is already too much like a fricking circus as it is.

All that said, Clay is a good kid, and replacing Ellmers with an out-gay Congressman would be fantabulistic.

Being a celebrity and being openly gay

... don't meant squat.

Aiken may very well have an aptitude for politics and government, and if so, I welcome him to show it.

However, the idea that someone should be supported just because they are openly gay is wrong. In fact, as an openly gay man myself, it pisses me off.

Rep. Marcus Brandon has been a disaster of a legislator, but national groups like the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund have already endorsed that sorry excuse for a legislator in the special election for Mel Watt's seat just because he's gay.

I'm all for providing competent role models and representation for underrepresented populations, but those individuals must be competent.


I can understand that

We should be striving for a political environment where personal characteristics like someone's appearance or espoused religion or sexual preference play no role at all in their pursuit of public office. But people aren't robots. "Identification" still plays a major role in our judgment process, and if Clay's celebrity and "our team" effect is enough to tip the odds in his favor, especially in this gerrymandered nightmare we are stuck with, I'm all for it.

But you're right, we know little right now about whether his overall values are Progressive or not. Marcus Brandon's fixation on private/charter schools served to put a seemingly "bi-partisan" stamp of approval on a destructive and regressive process, and it will take a monumental effort to reverse that. We need to make sure Clay doesn't have any weird predispositions like that before jumping too vigorously on the bandwagon.

It's not just the school thing with Brandon

He's a horrible legislator.

He misses votes for no good reason.

His campaign finance stuff was a mess. He got called on it, and it REMAINED a mess.

He couldn't even convince his seatmate to vote against (or take a walk) on the marriage amendment.

The guy is worthless as a legislator.

Yet some national group of LGBT-know-it-alls tosses out an endorsement just because he's gay.

The Aiken thing doesn't bother me as much as it reminds me of how embarrassed I am by Marcus Brandon.


For which team?

No that is not what I meant.

As of now, he is registered as an Unaffiliated voter. A candidate must be registered for 90 days within the Democratic Party in order to file as a candidate for Congress as a Democrat, and that window closed on November 29, 2013.

Not sure if this is directed at me,

but if it is, when I wrote "our team" above, I wasn't referring to the Democratic Party, I was referring to average North Carolinians' pride at having one of our own win the American Idol thingie. After rooting for him to win for an extended period of time on the show, they're much less likely to vote against him at the polls. That is my theory anyway, and I'm sticking to it. ;)

Aiken's voter registration: Democrat

County Name: CHATHAM
Voter Reg Num: 000000119103
NCID: EH342485
Status: ACTIVE
Address: 38 TOPAZ JEWEL
City: DURHAM, NC 27713
Birth Date:
VR Registration Date: 03/19/2010
Gender: MALE
Polling Place Address: 581 NEW HOPE CH
Polling Place City: APEX, NC 27523

Let me get this straight: lives in Durham, registration county is Chatham, and votes in Apex. Can someone explain this to me? (Data above from State Board of Elections).

Martha Brock

What it all boils down to is

What it all boils down to is that Aiken lives in Chatham county near the borders of Durham and Wake Counties, thus Durham and Apex addresses.

I'm a moderate Democrat.

Not you, Seinfield.

Clay is a fine man as near as I can tell, and he cares about education and fairness, and takes good care of his personal business and family. Besides that, I know nothing about him.

I am proud to have him on my team, as a citizen of North Carolina. When I asked "Which team?" I meant Democrat or GOP, because he is not one or the other. But the 'team' I was referring to when I said that is NOT what I meant was the one Elaine in the old Seinfield episode referred to. It was merely a joke, and not a good one apparently. I hope I cleared that up.

He should pay his dues first.

But to be serious I have a real problem with unaffiliated voters suddenly deciding that they want to run office as a Democrat or a Republican for that matter. If Aiken wants to promote the Democratic Party's objectives he needs to change his registration and work to help get Democrats elected in the next couple of election cycles and then look into jumping in as a candidate down the road. He could help a lot in fundraising in the 2nd District and statewide, but everyone should pay their dues and show their loyalty.

I'm a moderate Democrat.

I think it's more important to get good people to run for office

than to suggest they need to "pay their dues." I'll happily vote for an honest person who has never done anything for the party. And candidly, the "party" often either can't seem to find it's own behind with both hands, or happily endorses corporate dems who screw over those who help elect them.

Stan Bozarth

John Edwards

John Edwards

I'm a moderate Democrat.

The media is all over the Clay Aiken story

His story was on entertainment shows at 7pm and now MSNBC is talking about it. It is hard to create that kind of name recognition in usual campaigns. I am not taking a position on his candidacy yet, as I want to hear more. But, he is certainly getting lots of press and television coverage.

MSNBC moderator also raising question on his "paying his dues." Also, can he really do the job as a candidate with so little previous political experience? Good question.

Martha Brock

Well since the people of the 2nd district voted for Ellmers,

apparently political experience is not a prerequisite. So in answer to "... can he really do the job as a candidate with so little previous political experience?".

I would say the answer is yes.

I actively oppose gerrymandering. Do you?

Good point

And while I do understand the reluctance on the part of some folks in supporting a candidate who doesn't have much political experience under his/her belt, very often "paying your dues" in election politics also includes "picking up bad habits." Bad habits like trading a vote for something bad so you can get a vote on something good.

Is it correct that he was

Is it correct that he was registered as unaffiliated until recently? Does anyone know his views on issues? I'm not saying he wouldn't make a good congressmen, just that we should be cautious when candidates pop up out of the blue. When I say "paying dues" I don't necessarily mean in elected office, more working with others within the party. Has he attended precinct meetings, helped raise money for the party, endorsed candidates, written a letter to the editor, put up a yard sign, set up tables at a fundraiser, worked a phone bank during election season etc. etc.

I'm a moderate Democrat.