Former 'American Idol' runner-up Clay Aiken to run for US Congress
MANILA, Philippines – Former American Idol singer Clay Aiken is set to run for Congress.
After making a name for himself in the reality show and the music industry, the singer and educator is looking on to a different path – government office.
Aiken, a Democrat, announced his candidacy for a Congressional seat in North Carolina on Wednesday, February 5.
He is set to go against incumbent Republican congresswoman Renee Ellmers who got 55.90% of the votes against her two opponents in the 2012 elections.
In a video posted on his campaign website, Aiken mentioned how his story is not just about his "golden ticket" in American Idol.
He highlighted his background as a special education teacher and stressed his capability to perform bi-partisan duties, citing his brief appointment to the presidential commission on special education as an example. This was during the term of President George W. Bush – a Republican who appointed him to the commission despite Aiken being from the opposing party.
The Charlotte Observer says Aiken would have to face two other Democrats in a primary for the state’s second district prior to the midterm elections in November.
Meanwhile, TPM reports that Ellmers sneered at Aiken's announcement: "Apparently his performing career isn't going so well and he's bored."
She adds: "As we know he doesn't always fare all that well," Ellmers said. "He was runner up."
Watch Clay Aiken's campaign video here: