‘American Idol’ runner-up launches bid for Congress


“American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken (D) announced his campaign for U.S. Congress in his home state of North Carolina on Wednesday morning.

Aiken announced his candidacy on Twitter and released a campaign video on his website.

In the video, Aiken emphasized his working-class roots and his mother’s struggles with abuse. Referencing his time on American Idol, Aiken said, “For most Americans there are no golden tickets — at least not like the kind you see on TV.”

American Idol runner-up announced his candidacy for U.S. Congress with a video on Wednesday, February 5, 2014.
“American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken announced his candidacy for U.S. Congress with a video on Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014.

However, his Republican opponent, Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-N.C.), doesn’t seem too concerned about his ability to win the traditionally conservative district.

In a radio interview with WMAL last week Ellmers said, “Apparently, his performing career is not going so well.” She went on to say, “As we know he didn’t really fare all that well. He was runner-up.”

According to the Washington Post, “Aiken is considered a long shot in a strongly conservative district. Ellmers’s district went for Mitt Romney by 15 points in 2012.”

Despite the odds against Aiken, many fans have showed their support for the star on Twitter.

Following his stint on “American Idol,” Aiken saw success with his single “Invisible” but has largely remained out of the spotlight in recent years since he revealed he is gay to People magazine in 2008.

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