Clay Aiken knows it takes more than name recognition and star power to be elected to Congress, but does he have what it takes? And what does it take? Depending on who you ask, that can range from experience and a backbone to being famous and being able to cozy up to special interests.
Aiken, a Democrat, is hoping to win the right to challenge North Carolina's 2nd Congressional District seat from Republican Rep. Renee Ellmers, who is a Tea Party favorite and has held the seat for two terms. She will be running for a third.
Also in the running to win the Democratic challenge are businessman Keith Crisco and Tony Morris, who is a family counselor, according to AP.
Ellmers gained the seat in the landslide congressional upset of 2011, shortly before Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney won nearly 6 in 10 votes in the district and narrowly defeated Obama to win the entire state.
Republicans seem to think that Democrats have a very slim chance of winning this seat in the newly conservative state, what with the approval rating of the President down and the fairly unpopular Obamacare fiasco weighing on people's minds.
But these facts don't matter much to Aiken, who is riding on his ability to be a centrist. "I don't care what party they're in," Aiken says of voters in the central North Carolina district, "I'll talk to whoever."
He says he just wants to get the job done, but there is another seeming issue at hand. Can a gay man win the coveted seat in such a conservative state? So far so good, according to him. He says that reporters, and not voters, are the only people who even mention his sexual orientation.
Well, if some of that luck that carried him through American Idol rubbed off, perhaps we could have another celebrity-turned-politician on our hands!
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