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Clay Aiken ‘actively considering’ run for Congress: sources

‘American Idol’ alum has reportedly talked to DCCC about a bid

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Clay Aiken is "actively considering" a run for Congress, sources say. (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

Clay Aiken is “actively considering” a run for Congress, sources say. (Washington Blade file photo by Michael Key)

Gay singer and “American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken is actively considering a bid to represent North Carolina’s 2nd congressional district in the U.S. House, according to two Democratic sources familiar with his plans.

The sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the 35-year-old Raleigh native has taken initial steps for a run, including consulting with political operatives in Washington, D.C., about a bid for the seat.

One Democratic source said Aiken  made phone calls to gauge support, talked to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and has met with figures in Raleigh, N.C., about a potential bid. Although it’s unclear when Aiken might formally announce a decision, the source said Aiken is “actively considering” it and “sounding and acting like a candidate.”

To help explore a run, the source said Aiken has been working with Betsy Conti, a Raleigh-based political strategist who’s worked for former North Carolina Gov. Bev Purdue and Democratic presidential nominee Al Gore in addition to serving as Maryland’s deputy labor secretary in the Glendening administration. It’s unclear whether Aiken has formally hired her or anyone else to help with his bid.

Another Democratic source said Aiken was in D.C. last month meeting with pollsters at Hart Research Associates to examine polling data with one of the partners at the firm.

The DCCC hasn’t responded to multiple requests to comment about a potential Aiken candidacy in the past few weeks. Neither Conti nor the Hart Research Associates responded to the Blade’s request for comment on Thursday.

Aiken himself was unable to be reached for comment. A Los Angeles-based management company known as the Firm, which reportedly represented Aiken for his music career in the last decade, didn’t respond to a request for comment.

Aiken wouldn’t be the only candidate on the Democratic side to pursue a run for the House seat, which is currently occupied by Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-N.C.). Former North Carolina Commerce Secretary Keith Crisco is expected to formally announce his candidacy on Monday. He  formed a campaign committee to explore a run in December.

The filing deadline to participate in the primary is Feb. 28. The primary itself in North Carolina is set for May 6.

Although the polls indicate Republicans may be favored as the mid-term elections approach on a general ballot, the Democratic nominee — whether it’s Aiken, Crisco or someone else — may have a shot at the seat, which comprises Raleigh and was controlled by Democrats before the Republican surge in 2010. A House Democratic aide, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, described the second congressional district as a “winnable seat” for Democrats.

After finishing in second-place on Fox’s “American Idol” in 2003, Aiken used the prominence he gained from performing on the show to launch a successful music and Broadway career. He’s sold more than six millions copies of his albums, and, according to Forbes, made $1.5 million in 2010.

Aiken has also drawn on his fame to help promote causes as an activist. He co-founded the the National Inclusion Project, formerly the Bubel/Aiken Foundation, which seeks to help children with disabilities. Tapped as a national ambassador for the United States Fund for UNICEF in 2004, Aiken has travelled to Afghanistan, Indonesia, Uganda, Mexico, Kenya and Somalia as part of aid missions.

The singer has also taken part in LGBT activism. In 2010, the singer appeared at a briefing on Capitol Hill on behalf of the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network, or GLSEN, to urge for passage of anti-bullying legislation with LGBT protections known as the Student Non-Discrimination Act and the Safe Schools Improvement Act.

“Like many kids now in middle schools and high schools, I was bullied,” Aiken said at the time. “I was picked on, I was called gay, I was called fag, I was called sissy, you name it. Fortunately, I was able to overcome it and live through it because of a number of friends who were supportive of me.”

Dogged by rumors about his sexual orientation during his appearance on “American Idol” and over the course of his musical career afterward, Aiken came out as a gay in 2008 by appearing on the cover of “People” magazine with his then-infant son Parker Foster Aiken.

“It was the first decision I made as a father,” Aiken told the magazine. “I cannot raise a child to lie or to hide things. I wasn’t raised that way, and I’m not going to raise a child to do that.”

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203 Comments

203 Comments

  1. Mary Kay Farmer

    January 3, 2014 at 3:02 am

    He would be an excellant congrssman just will greatly miss his singng

    • LJ

      January 3, 2014 at 2:46 pm

      You might be a moron.

      • Benji

        January 3, 2014 at 5:26 pm

        No, that might be you. Anyone who knows anything about the guy knows that he has always been active in political issues, is very articulate, outspoken & impassioned. He also has a great voice.

    • Jackson

      January 3, 2014 at 9:02 pm

      What makes him excellent? What are his qualifications? Being “gay” isn’t exactly a qualification but it seems like that is the platform the democratic party has chosen for him. Has he ever run a business? Does he have an education (higher degree)? The article appears to be silent on these important matters. Sorry but “gay” isn’t a reason to elect or not elect someone.

    • Drew

      January 4, 2014 at 1:16 am

      Did Barry Manilow change his name??

    • Patrick Henry

      January 4, 2014 at 10:31 am

      Of couse his homosexual hook up at a Holiday Inn in Garner, NC located at 40/42 will have no bearing on whether he will defeat the current incumbent. The 2nd is very socially conservative has served her consituents well. Her defeat of the drunken moron Bob Etheridge was a God Send. No, Clay keep your money, it would be a waste to even try.

  2. Kathleen Lynch

    January 2, 2014 at 10:14 pm

    Clay would be amazing in Congress or any other political position. is extremely proud to be from North Carolina and will represent the state well. He is smart, considerate, honest and down to earth. What a welcome change that would bring!

  3. Shelley Anderson

    January 3, 2014 at 3:16 am

    Bravo. I hope he runs.

  4. Shelley Anderson

    January 3, 2014 at 3:16 am

    Bravo. I hope he runs.

  5. Dorothy M Raftery

    January 3, 2014 at 3:55 am

    He would make a great congressman. He's got it all wrapped in one package. Good luck Clay!!!!

    • Jen

      January 3, 2014 at 1:19 pm

      Dorothy, can you tell us what it is about Clay Aiken that would make a good congressman?

    • JoJo

      January 3, 2014 at 3:03 pm

      And exactly what qualification does he have for this position or are you so dumbed down that you don’t value actual “qualification” in your leaders?

      • Lauren

        January 4, 2014 at 7:39 pm

        I think all the “Bravo” “Bravo” chatter is a wink to the major tv channel that would be covering his run..

        Hot political tip .. don’t start calling Duck Dynasty “vile”..

  6. Christian Joy Cortes

    January 3, 2014 at 4:29 am

    He will definitely help more people every now and then. Hope he can make it, and good-luck to him..=)

  7. Mumm Fums

    January 3, 2014 at 11:01 am

    Wish he would run in my NC District!

  8. Joanne Padowicz Bewley

    January 3, 2014 at 12:26 pm

    Where does he stand on separation of church and state?

  9. Joanne Padowicz Bewley

    January 3, 2014 at 12:26 pm

    Where does he stand on separation of church and state?

    • Benji

      January 3, 2014 at 5:29 pm

      He was raised a conservative Christian, but disagrees with any one religion dominating the political discourse. Socially, he’s more liberal.

  10. Joyce Rasic Etter

    January 3, 2014 at 2:29 pm

    They need to include that he is well educated, knowledgable, and intelligent.

  11. dave

    January 3, 2014 at 10:38 am

    What a joke. I suppose he can’t be much worse than the closet homos, crypto jews and vatican agents currently wrecking up the joint.

  12. Scoon Jenkins

    January 3, 2014 at 10:45 am

    LOL

  13. Dave Turner

    January 3, 2014 at 4:04 pm

    Honestly, beyond the name recognition and his sexuality, what does he bring to the race that someone else doesn't?

    Anybody is able to run for congress but he's going to be one tiny fish in a big sea. Unless he's hoping to parlay his sexual identity in to camera time, he's going to get lost in that sea should he win.

  14. sick of liberals

    January 3, 2014 at 11:41 am

    What a bunch of crap, and the low info voters here are all ready to vote for him.I guess if he decides to run for POTUS he can have Adam Lambert as his first…whatever the hell he is.

    • Patrick Henry

      January 4, 2014 at 10:35 am

      LOL, don’t worry he’ll never get in. Too much baggage here in the 2nd District to defeat well-respected Renee Elmers

  15. Tom Wharton

    January 3, 2014 at 4:50 pm

    this [email protected] is not gonna win. He's got ZERO qualifications, except he's a [email protected]

    • Jen

      January 3, 2014 at 1:18 pm

      Tom Wharton, that’s uncalled for. Who cares if he’s gay as long as he adheres to the constitution!

    • Zach

      January 3, 2014 at 2:49 pm

      Tom go crawl under the bridge you came from, and please drown yourself in the river it crosses. #Troll

  16. Ack Blauvelt

    January 3, 2014 at 4:59 pm

    I don't think he'll be running so much as prancing.

  17. Ack Blauvelt

    January 3, 2014 at 4:59 pm

    I don't think he'll be running so much as prancing.

  18. Ack Blauvelt

    January 3, 2014 at 4:59 pm

    I don't think he'll be running so much as prancing.

  19. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    Oh great. Just what we need another liberal in Washington.

  20. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    Oh great. Just what we need another liberal in Washington.

  21. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    Oh great. Just what we need another liberal in Washington.

  22. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 5:09 pm

    Oh great. Just what we need another liberal in Washington.

  23. Tim

    January 3, 2014 at 12:22 pm

    great, another person out of touch with the working person.

  24. APINELLI66

    January 3, 2014 at 12:32 pm

    THIS LOSER WOULD FIT IN FINE WITH 99.9% OF CONGRESS!

  25. Larry Croft

    January 3, 2014 at 12:39 pm

    Let’s hope he runs and the voters tell us what they really think of his ability to serve in a way he never forgets and always regrets.

  26. Lance

    January 3, 2014 at 12:54 pm

    Stick to singing.

  27. Dusty

    January 3, 2014 at 1:01 pm

    There was absolutely no substantive material in this article that would lead me to believe that he would be either a good or a bad congressman. Perhaps we should vet his politics before we jump on the bandwagon and vote him into congress.

  28. doug

    January 3, 2014 at 1:12 pm

    luckily, he is used to coming in second

  29. Jen

    January 3, 2014 at 1:17 pm

    More power to him if he understands what the Constitution is and what it means and if he intends to honor his oath to protect and defend said constitution. But since he’s running as a democrat, me thinks he has no clue what all of that even means. Sad.

    • Patrick Henry

      January 4, 2014 at 10:37 am

      Renee Elmers has all of that withot putting him into this office. If he runs I will have to vote just to vote against him!

  30. Durpi Tude

    January 3, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    We don’t need any more degenerates in Congress. The ship is sinking already.

  31. Rod

    January 3, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    I guess that being a gay now qualifies someone for Congress. Next, we will have President Rupaul. Come to think of it, Obama is pretty gay himself.

  32. Rod

    January 3, 2014 at 1:35 pm

    I guess that being a gay is now what makes someone qualified for Congress. Next, we’ll have President Rupaul. We basically have that now with Obamanation.

  33. Andy P

    January 3, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    Would like to know his stance on the issues. Hope it’s not just a run for homosexuals.

  34. Stan

    January 3, 2014 at 1:38 pm

    Well he certainly meets all of the liberal criteria to run for office, eh? The sheep are going to come out in droves to vote for this one.

  35. HM Phobe

    January 3, 2014 at 1:39 pm

    You probably should do this in a blue state – doubt you would win a red state.

  36. RightStuff

    January 3, 2014 at 1:45 pm

    In Ancient Rome, whenever the court jesters tried to involve themselves in the government or politics, they were swiftly made to disappear. Just what I’ve heard. Not suggesting anything.

  37. ConcernedOne

    January 3, 2014 at 1:48 pm

    I sure hope the kids on here saying “he would be great” “he’s got in all” are NOT allowed to vote.

    I’ll ask you: HOW would he be great? What does he bring to the US Citizens? What experience? Where does he stand on the US Constitution? The State Constitution? The FIRST thing this shabby article does is call him a “Gay Singer” Wow, now that is something. Not a great singer or performer or anything else, it LABELED him by his SEXUALITY. That IS NOT a characteristic to run for political office. Nor should looks or someone who can read a teleprompter.

    Get a clue!

    • Benji

      January 3, 2014 at 5:33 pm

      Why don’t YOU get a clue? Perhaps the people saying they’d vote for him actually know more about him than you. Ever think of that? He has many qualifications – look them up.

    • Patrick Henry

      January 4, 2014 at 10:40 am

      He’ll bring absolutely nothing to our District, Of course my only concern is that this district did elect the drunk Bob Etheridge a few times. I’m sure a few low information voters will be trying to vote American Idol style

  38. ONTIME

    January 3, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    Why not just enjoy the money you make thru capitalism and then start your own foundation and stay out of the deemer crook lair, so your life won’t get more screwed up?
    Really stupid thinking by a meat head..

  39. Nancy

    January 3, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    This amazes me how people are gushing over this guy running for Congress. What makes him so great – singing ability (dubious at best) doesn’t equate with ability to get this country out of its problems. I bet every one of you hang on every morsel Hollywood stars say about politics .. as if they are experts also. This is the sad state our country has come to.

    • Allergic to Republican Hypocrites

      January 3, 2014 at 8:13 pm

      Did you have this sort of negative attitude about Ronald ‘no qualification other than B-movie actor’ Reagan running for office? Or Gopher? Or Ah-nuld?

  40. Flannigan McGaffigan

    January 3, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    Clay Aiken’s credentials for government leadership are:
    1) Practicing homosexual
    2) Sings well

  41. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 7:19 pm

    He can sing…of course he should run. Al Franken can make people laugh…of course he should run. Barack Obama can agitate a community…of course he should run. In the world of pop culture, any "fame" makes you qualified and probably a shoo-in. My goodness, if the public recognizes your name, what else do you need??? (Unfortunately…)

  42. deskboy

    January 3, 2014 at 2:20 pm

    I bet he sings the national anthem at Pinkskins games

  43. Hans

    January 3, 2014 at 2:22 pm

    Yah, like we need another inexperienced stupid congressman. But then the stupid “sheep” will probably vote him in just as they did Obummer.

  44. Sylvia Tennie Parkey

    January 3, 2014 at 7:23 pm

    Just what qualificationsdo you have except to TRYto tear someone down.It shows just how ignorant you sound & are.What have you done to help ANYONE. Nothing, I'm sure.

  45. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 7:23 pm

    He would not get my vote!

  46. David Hedricks

    January 3, 2014 at 2:27 pm

    I’m sure Barney Frank is quite pleased!

  47. Mike Yancey

    January 3, 2014 at 7:28 pm

    Singing and orientation don't matter. I love him as an entertainer, but he'll be just anothe big government liberal.

  48. Dave Owen

    January 3, 2014 at 7:32 pm

    Worked for algore? Next.

  49. Sabrina Dively

    January 3, 2014 at 7:33 pm

    I believe you're a fraud Tom Wharton. But if I'm wrong- as a conservative I support your right to free speech and religious convictions just as I support Mr. Aiken s choice to freely love and share a life with whoever he chooses. It's all about Liberty.

  50. Jack Blair

    January 3, 2014 at 7:38 pm

    Just what we need. Another Homo in a position of legislation to further their agenda.

  51. Jack Blair

    January 3, 2014 at 7:40 pm

    I agree with Tom. He's a Fag

    • Robert H Street

      January 4, 2014 at 5:03 am

      The Washington Blade is a gay newspaper. Your comments are highly offensive. If you don’t like gays don’t come here.

    • Delta

      January 4, 2014 at 4:44 pm

      LMFAO !!!!! Now that’s funny

  52. Kaya Hund

    January 3, 2014 at 7:43 pm

    I have no problem with Clay running for Congress — he'd certainly do a better job than Nancy Pelosi.

  53. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 7:44 pm

    And exactly what would make him an excellent Congressman? Because he's gay?

  54. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 7:45 pm

    So was Hitler.

  55. John Smith

    January 3, 2014 at 7:46 pm

    Thats all we need. Another defect in government. Reckon him & Lindsay Graham will be "best buds" after a bit.

  56. Robert Trip

    January 3, 2014 at 7:48 pm

    I don't believe he's quite gay enough.
    But, close.

  57. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 7:48 pm

    Sabrina Dively Except when your convictions tell you to sand against his homosexuality. Then your free speech becomes hate speech according to the left and must be squashed. Can't have it just one way Sabrina.

  58. Pippa

    January 3, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    The Gay agenda is being forced on America! Gay marriage, gay boy scouts, transgender bathrooms in elementary school….the moral decay of this nation is happening before our eyes!!!

  59. Free Man

    January 3, 2014 at 2:50 pm

    Sexuality has nothing to do with how I vote but there was one thing in this article that eliminates Clay from getting any support from me and hopefully any other sane person who doesn’t vote blindly.

    Clay has been actively working with Al Gore. Anyone who works with Al Gore loses a lot of creditibilty. It would be really easy to pick apart any false ideology that comes from these lying leeches.

    I hope clay distances himself as much as possible from Al Gore and when he gets asked his political views I hope he is honest,

    • Benji

      January 3, 2014 at 5:36 pm

      You need to learn to read. I doubt he’s even met Al Gore. However, a political strategist he’s been talking with WORKED with Al Gore. 2 degrees of seperation – get it?

  60. Sabrina Dively

    January 3, 2014 at 7:51 pm

    Hopefully he believes the state shall not impose a religion on the citizens but that the citizens are free to practice their religion without persecution and prejudice. It's all about Liberty.

  61. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 7:52 pm

    Dorothy: I don't care about his "package" as maybe some of his gay supporters do. I care about his qualifications of which he has none. Sorry, being gay doesn't rank.

  62. Reva Toby

    January 3, 2014 at 7:52 pm

    Clay mates are out in full force. He's smart, I'll give you that, but we don't need another gay person running based on their sexual orientation.

  63. Deb

    January 3, 2014 at 2:53 pm

    What qualifications does he have for the office? What would make him an excellent congressman? I’d want more from my congressperson than being able to sing.

  64. William Collier

    January 3, 2014 at 7:57 pm

    What are his positions? That's all that matters.

    • Gomorrah

      January 3, 2014 at 3:06 pm

      Public or behind closed doors? Perhaps they’re the same?

  65. Lloyd Hargett

    January 3, 2014 at 8:01 pm

    Ever since Al Franken stole his election, every moron in the world thinks he can be a congressman. And judging from the incumbents, it doesn't take much to be one, I guess. But first go comb your hair . . .

  66. Faye Schull

    January 3, 2014 at 3:09 pm

    Can he really get elected with a “There’s Something About Mary” Cameron Diaz hairdo.

  67. Bradley Goodrich

    January 3, 2014 at 8:09 pm

    Jack Blair Another "conservative" who wants government to leave people alone — unless it's to peek in their bedrooms or orifices.

  68. Bob White

    January 3, 2014 at 8:10 pm

    Isn't that kind of personal?

  69. Emilie Handschyn

    January 3, 2014 at 8:11 pm

    Oh goody another father raising a child into mental chaos and confusion. As for qualifications, as others are stating, none are needed as long as you are a celebrity and gay! Brains can be left at the door.

  70. Kevin Mandrews

    January 3, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    Tom and Jack should get a room!

  71. Kevin Mandrews

    January 3, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    Tom and Jack should get a room!

  72. Don Benghazi Hooker

    January 3, 2014 at 8:19 pm

    Well, in today's America, being a h0m0sexua! is all that matters. That's how we wind up with an idiot like 0bama in office.

  73. Cj Jones

    January 3, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    He's a great candidate for obtuse liberal voters who don't care about experience or qualifications.

  74. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 8:23 pm

    He'll fit right in with that crowd.

  75. Terry Davis

    January 3, 2014 at 8:24 pm

    Oh gosh, another celebrity that thinks they can help!

  76. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 8:26 pm

    Who says? At least his filibusters will be entertaining as he sings for 36 hours straight.

  77. Jason Weiers

    January 3, 2014 at 8:27 pm

    Um, Mitt Romney won this district by 15.5%. No Democrat will win this district (especially Aiken), even if it's a blue waive of 2008 proportions.

  78. Gunny G

    January 3, 2014 at 3:27 pm

    Wow, another UNQUALIFIED idiot who thinks he can be a Congcritter. Well, he’s no dumber than Hank Johnson or Maxine Waters or Sheila Jackson-Lee or Nutsy Baloney.

  79. Joan Lussier

    January 3, 2014 at 8:28 pm

    Sabrina Dively Ditto that !!

  80. Jeffrey Everhart

    January 3, 2014 at 8:30 pm

    What qualifications did Barack Obummer have before he ran for President?

  81. Chris Hoobs

    January 3, 2014 at 8:31 pm

    Dorothy, just exactly why do you think he'd make a great Congressman? What are his credentials? What are his stands on issues? What has he ever done? (American Idol doesn't count)

  82. William Mc Burney

    January 3, 2014 at 8:35 pm

    Sabrina Dively

    Well you can see what that kind of Liberality is doing to our Country ! and you dear are not a conservative so come out of the closet your self.

  83. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 8:37 pm

    Bradley Goodrich Or on floats in parades in public, right Braddy?

  84. David Ortiz

    January 3, 2014 at 8:42 pm

    Bradley Goodrich oh so i take it you dont support govt funding for birth control pills

  85. David Ortiz

    January 3, 2014 at 8:46 pm

    Great now we can have a Glee Congress

  86. Preston Smith

    January 3, 2014 at 8:50 pm

    He cant win… I can care less that he choose to reveal his personal sexual behavior to the public, he still wont win…

  87. Pamela Thomas Hickey

    January 3, 2014 at 8:53 pm

    He looks like he's 12 years old, no way. I couldn't care less that he's gay. Look what happened the last time Americans voted based on emotions rather then qualifications.

  88. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 8:55 pm

    Atleast it's not GOP Cult nut jobs

  89. Katrina Ellen

    January 3, 2014 at 8:59 pm

    So his singing and acting career is at a dead end, no more reality shows coming up, why not give it a go as a politician.

  90. Bob Smogango

    January 3, 2014 at 8:59 pm

    Sylvia Tennie Parkey He's just afraid and I'm sure maybe in his next lifetime he might be gay to overcome his adversity to being gay. Maybe that'll change his mind. Some people don't have a problem with other people's lifestyle as long as it doesn't infringe on someone else's. Someone being gay has nothing to do with me, so that's THEIR thing. Obviously, Tom can't seem to get past his backwards a$$ mentality of other people. Oh well.

  91. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 9:00 pm

    Go Clay!!! I want you and all of your pin headed Demroids to spend large $ to help NC's economy. Then you can sing sad songs at your concession speach..

  92. John Fogarty

    January 3, 2014 at 9:01 pm

    Doggie and knees

  93. Cyndy Martin

    January 3, 2014 at 9:01 pm

    Well what qualifications did Barry have?

  94. Don Benghazi Hooker

    January 3, 2014 at 9:02 pm

    Where is that mentioned in the Constitution? Maybe you should start by reading it first.

  95. Bob Smogango

    January 3, 2014 at 9:02 pm

    At least it's better than a son of a Nazi, who is friends with Nazi criminals, that used to be a heavy pot smoker, steroid dealer, and someone that cheats on his wife, has countless number of sexual harassment issues. For the State of California, we had Arnold Schwarzenegger and all he did was waste OTHER people's money to promote his MASSIVE ego and he promoted his agenda which was to make pot legal, make crooked deals, and not help the State. Glad he's gone, he should have never been allowed to run for ANY public office due to his Nazi connections.

  96. John Fogarty

    January 3, 2014 at 9:03 pm

    You can't even spell so your opinion is really important!

  97. Christopher Mahoney

    January 3, 2014 at 9:08 pm

    I thought Wayne newton lived in Nevada.

  98. Bradley Goodrich

    January 3, 2014 at 9:11 pm

    You mean like top or bottom? Or this issues?

  99. Bradley Goodrich

    January 3, 2014 at 9:11 pm

    You mean like top or bottom? Or this issues?

  100. Paul Meuse

    January 3, 2014 at 9:13 pm

    Bent over with his a$$ in the air .

  101. Bradley Goodrich

    January 3, 2014 at 9:14 pm

    It depends on what context. If you are Sandra Fluke, a lazy, 30 year-old student who can well afford to buy her own, then no.

  102. Michael David Davis

    January 3, 2014 at 9:15 pm

    Any democrat talking about "cult nut jobs" is so delusionsal (not to mention so incredibly stupid) that his/her opinion is automatically absurd. Are there ANY libs left out there who are not totally lacking in self-awareness?

  103. Michael David Davis

    January 3, 2014 at 9:16 pm

    name recognition in this case will not be a help

  104. Michael David Davis

    January 3, 2014 at 9:17 pm

    not sure—-probably doggie-style is his fave though

  105. Fred W Dixon Jr

    January 3, 2014 at 9:17 pm

    He has zero chance in a district that is becoming more Republican.

  106. Fred W Dixon Jr

    January 3, 2014 at 9:19 pm

    More like best "butts"

  107. Al Schork

    January 3, 2014 at 9:25 pm

    He surely wouldn't suck any worse than Bwarney Fhwank, or would he?

  108. Joshua Embrey

    January 3, 2014 at 9:38 pm

    He's most likely split.

  109. Joshua Embrey

    January 3, 2014 at 9:38 pm

    He's most likely split.

  110. Johnny LaQuayshiateefah Doe

    January 3, 2014 at 9:39 pm

    Great, another mush minded pop culture puppet who thinks that, because he is the momentary fetish to which clueless teenagers masturbate,, he actually has qualified thoughts on policy. Gaga for President, too.

  111. Connie Johnson Waterman

    January 3, 2014 at 9:44 pm

    N.C and the South is being infiltrated by liberals from the NE. They are running for town council/school boards, e.g. Whether they lare qualified makes no difference (look at Obama – the community agitator/he got elected w/NO experience in anything). It is all about taking over the South & taking over every aspect of citizens lives, granting illegals amnesty, destroying the institution of marriage, further destroying the family unit.(80% of black babies are born out of wedlock/have no daddys but do get $$$ for those babies, 45%latinos out of wedlock, 24% white babies out of wedlock & encouraged by libs/dems all to make them become dependents to the democrat party). But hey, dems/libs can lie to get elected then do what obama is doing – disregard laws they don't like & make up new ones as they see fit. NEVER vote democrat/liberal/progressive/socialists unless you want to live like cubans!

  112. Jim Pietrowski

    January 3, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    BWAQHAHHAHAHHAHAAA! another fruitcake liberal. Just what would this freak bring to the table??

  113. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    No more democrats, please. The democrats have done enough damage and it will take years to repair. We don't need any more democrats, gay or straight. Clay – go away!

  114. Johnny LaQuayshiateefah Doe

    January 3, 2014 at 9:49 pm

    Sabrina Dively
    Aw, that was so cute and sweet. Perhaps Hallmark work grimey anal penetration themes into more of their vignettes of romance.

  115. Barry Cole

    January 3, 2014 at 10:01 pm

    Sabrina Dively You know that's highly unlikely. He will want people to follow the Church of State, AKA Political Correctness.

  116. Barry Cole

    January 3, 2014 at 10:02 pm

    You did say "fruitcake".

  117. Joe Campbell

    January 3, 2014 at 10:03 pm

    I would never knowingly vote for a queer…

  118. Idan Camenforte

    January 3, 2014 at 10:12 pm

    Great! One more gay advocate in congress. What's his platform? Queer eye for the straight democratic voter?

  119. Dominic

    January 3, 2014 at 5:14 pm

    Enough with the obsession over who is gay or not. Simply being gay does not qualify you for anything! I am so sick and tired of hearing about who’s a homosexual, who’s not, who said this about homosexuals, who said that. Give it a rest already.

  120. Kyle Ryan McGuire

    January 3, 2014 at 10:19 pm

    Tom, I'll never vote for a Democrat, but I'm embarrassed for you. You really are an idiot.

  121. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 10:35 pm

    Clay Aiken… What qualifications, besides sucking does he have? Whoops. Forgot. Anymore thats all you need.

  122. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 10:39 pm

    I am still trying to figure out how liberals, about 10-15 percent of the population keep winning elections against a much vaster amount in population. Does their single votes count for 4,5,6,7 votes?

  123. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 10:43 pm

    Really. Out of here and back to a normal site with normal people.

  124. Sami

    January 3, 2014 at 5:44 pm

    I saw Clay once on FACE THE NATION – he really surprised me with his solid grounding in the issues that day. I wouldn’t count him out. Everyone laughed at Sonny Bono & he turned out to be a very popular Congressman in his district.

  125. Brian Thomas

    January 3, 2014 at 10:47 pm

    Does he understand that he isn't going up against 11 other hopefuls and that votes are not cast by calling a 1-800 number at the end of all the other contestants songs?

  126. Barbara Dunphy Mazzocca

    January 3, 2014 at 10:50 pm

    Clay, go back to the special ed kids, they need you. Seriously, you are great with them.

  127. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 10:56 pm

    oooooooo mmmmmmmmmmmmmm ggggggggggggggggg!!!!!!!!! but he can sing soooo good.
    NC you craZE!

  128. Anonymous

    January 3, 2014 at 11:07 pm

    Of course he should run. The democrats need Village People to secure their GL standings in the delusional, and rectal avenues of distorted lifestyles.

  129. Patrick A. Tierney

    January 3, 2014 at 11:13 pm

    His hair looks as if someone stuck something in his butt!!

  130. Patrick A. Tierney

    January 3, 2014 at 11:13 pm

    His hair looks as if someone stuck something in his butt!!

  131. Carolyn Cancilla Yellis

    January 3, 2014 at 11:15 pm

    I can't beleive the people here saying that Aitken would make a great Congressman? Didn't you idots learn from the last time(s) YOU voted in a person with NO experience? Yes. I mean YOUR leader. Just tell me one thing that make4s Airken qualificated to be a US Congressman? Thought so. you can't name one. Please please please don't vote if you are NOT informed. Politicians are powerful and we need leadership; NOT idolism. IMHO

  132. Peggie Raftery McCormack

    January 3, 2014 at 11:20 pm

    Check out what Clay had done since Idol… And back away from my Mother both of you

    • gregorious

      January 3, 2014 at 7:03 pm

      I’d say most politicians make bad politicians. He’s gay, an entertainer, not a veteran, never ran a business, as far as anyone knows never studied history, economics, civics, law or foreign affairs… THE PERFECT CANDIDATE FOR OUR CURRENT POLITICAL CLIMATE AND CULTURE.

  133. Dayna Gilbert

    January 3, 2014 at 11:20 pm

    no more celebrity politicians… have we learned nothing from Arnold, Al Franken, among others. It does not matter the party, most celebrities make bad politicians.

  134. Dayna Gilbert

    January 3, 2014 at 11:22 pm

    other than your derogatory term i agree with you 100%.

  135. Dayna Gilbert

    January 3, 2014 at 11:24 pm

    Sylvia Tennie Parkey hon i disagree with his terminology, but aiken has nothing to bring to the table… he is a musician… nothing more.

  136. Dayna Gilbert

    January 3, 2014 at 11:28 pm

    Don Benghazi Hooker we should have not ended up with Obama do not blame me, i voted for McCain and Palin.

  137. Falsk Konto

    January 3, 2014 at 11:32 pm

    At a time when this country is in desperate need of leaders to turn the economy around, address a crippling debt, and open up opportunities for new business (especially in manufacturing), do we get an economist, a business leader, or an academic? No, we get a jester….

  138. Russ

    January 3, 2014 at 6:33 pm

    I’m glad he is used to finishing second.

  139. Juan Mophus Beeber

    January 3, 2014 at 11:34 pm

    I don't really see his orientation being an issue in NC. While there certainly is some very conservative folks in NC, on the whole its a moderate state more concerned with character than preferences. Personally, I don't think he has a resume that supports a run for Congress and would probably be destroyed by the 'machine' of either party.

    • Patrick Henry

      January 4, 2014 at 10:45 am

      You don’t live in the 2nd District. NC is a very diverse state. The 2nd is a rural area for the most part touching some parts of Raleigh but not the populated areas. So as a Red State that has a Republican HOuse Senate and Governor, voted against the tyrant last time in the White House, With Kay HAgan already on the ropes for her Senate seat down under 40% without a Republican challenger yet. He has zero chance, unless there is stuffing the ballot box American Idol Style voting doesnt count in Elections unless you are B Obama

  140. Judy Foley

    January 3, 2014 at 11:34 pm

    Why in the hell do they have to start a sentence off with "A Gay singer" ? What the hell is up with that?. They never did that to Elton John.

  141. Christopher Morris

    January 3, 2014 at 11:35 pm

    Run Girl Run!

  142. Mark Rogers

    January 3, 2014 at 11:36 pm

    Just what we need. Lol!!

  143. Juan Mophus Beeber

    January 3, 2014 at 11:36 pm

    yarply12 You are forgetting the 'other' liberals. The dead ones, the imaginary ones, the multiple voters, the graveyard names, etc. They account for over 40% of the liberal vote in most elections.

  144. Juan Mophus Beeber

    January 3, 2014 at 11:38 pm

    unixfly666, you folks have an illegal in the white house that to this day HIDES all of his academic records, has multiple SSN's, breaks the law regularly, vacations and golfs more than all of his predecessors combined and you want to talk about a CULT? LOL. You would have loved Jim Jones. Him and Obama have the same charisma!

  145. Juan Mophus Beeber

    January 3, 2014 at 11:39 pm

    Given the outcome of the DOMA proposition in NC, you have probably got a point.

  146. Gary Johnson

    January 3, 2014 at 11:41 pm

    Great. Another fruitcake in congress. This cutie will probably make Barney Frank come out of retirement….

  147. Lee Garen

    January 3, 2014 at 11:44 pm

    He'll never make it….he's a dumacrat and they're going down in the next election!

  148. Sam

    January 3, 2014 at 7:32 pm

    Good thing Clay is already accustomed to coming in second.

    He is not going to help Democrats with their image problem in North Carolina any.

  149. YouGotToBeKiddingMe

    January 3, 2014 at 7:36 pm

    He has his homosexual agenda and that is all he has and that is not what is on the minds of 98% of American’s. Go away and don’t look back North Carolina does not need you pushing your gay agenda.

  150. gail

    January 3, 2014 at 7:42 pm

    A fetish of pumping poo is not anything to do with equality . Sexual deviates who risk infecting everyone with Aids and hep a, b, c . should not be allowed near food or other people let alone children its a huge health hazard . They have the hide to say all normal people have to take away mother and father from all legal documents because it offends them , yet it offends all normal people and their children what they are doing . Anus is not made for sexual activity , ITS DISGUSTING . This is like the Jones town cult .

  151. BAMA BADGER

    January 3, 2014 at 8:24 pm

    Have to admit…. A gay singer/entertainer should be more qualified than a community organizer.

    • Patrick Henry

      January 4, 2014 at 10:33 am

      How is Renee Elmers a community organizer? Her occupation is Nursing. People outside of the 2nd District of North Carolina should keep their opinions to their own state.

  152. El gato

    January 4, 2014 at 9:06 am

    He heard about Obummer being on the down low, so he want’s to get into position (on his knees) to help Obummer get off. Just what we need…another boob with no qualifications or experience telling everyone else how to live. Keep the queer in the sewer where he belongs. All you sick women who like him should be ashamed of yourselves!

  153. eilspaul

    January 4, 2014 at 1:39 pm

    wow.
    forget owning a business, managing people, solving problems, making payroll, running a nonprofit, studying public policy, creating jobs, working in other areas of the public sector, et.al.

    the dncc is now using this checklist to find “qualified” candidates:
    __ appeared on reality t.v.
    __ gay

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Local

Missing gay man found ‘alive and well’

Police say Richard ‘Rick’ Woods found in good health

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Richard G. ‘Rick’ Woods, a 65-year-old gay man, was found alive and well.

D.C. police announced on Friday that Richard G. ‘Rick’ Woods, a 65-year-old gay man who police said was reported missing and last seen on July 14, has been located. But the announcement doesn’t provide information on where he was found or why he went missing.

Friends who know Woods say he operated for many years an antique wood furniture restoration business in various locations in D.C. The most recent location of his business, friends said, was in Georgetown a short distance from where police said he was last seen on the 1600 block of Wisconsin Avenue, N.W.

“MPD does not publicly disclose the circumstances surrounding a missing person and how they are found, however we do release their flyer as well as a notification when they are located,” said D.C. police spokesperson Brianna Burch. “Mr. Woods was found in good health,” Burch told the Blade.

Police sought help from the public in their initial announcement that Woods was missing. The announcement said he was reported missing to police on Friday, July 23.

Logan Circle Advisory Neighborhood Commissioner and LGBTQ rights advocate John Fanning, who said he has been friends with Woods for many years, said he was delighted to hear Woods was found in good condition.

“Rick is known by many in our community,” Fanning told the Blade at the time Woods was reported missing. Fanning said he and others who know Woods stand ready to provide support for him should he be in need of such support.

The Blade couldn’t immediately reach Woods for comment.

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Politics

Biden to nominate LGBTQ synagogue rabbi to religious freedom commission

Sharon Kleinbaum joined NYC’s Congregation Beit Simchat Torah in 1992

Published

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Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum (Photo courtesy of Facebook)

President Biden on Friday announced he plans to nominate the chief rabbi of an LGBTQ synagogue in New York City to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom.

Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum joined Congregation Beit Simchat Torah in 1992.

“She was installed as CBST’s first rabbi in 1992, arriving at the height of the AIDS crisis when the synagogue was in desperate need of pastoral care and spiritual leadership,” reads a bio that announced Biden’s intention to nominate Kleinbaum to the commission. “She guided the congregation through a period of loss and change, while addressing social issues and building a strong and deeply spiritual community. Under her leadership as senior rabbi, CBST has become a powerful voice in the movement for equality and justice for people of all sexual orientations, gender identities and expressions.”

Kleinbaum is married to American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten.

The commission seeks to defend religious freedom in the U.S. and around the world. The president and Democratic and Republican leaders in Congress nominate members.

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Local

Some D.C. gay bars to require proof of COVID vaccination

Action prompted by mayor’s order reinstating masks indoors

Published

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Adams Morgan’s A League of Her Own is among the area queer bars requiring proof of vaccination for entry.

At least four D.C. gay bars announced this week on social media that they will require patrons to show proof that they have been vaccinated for COVID-19 as a condition for being admitted to the bars.

They include the Logan Circle area gay bars Number Nine and Trade, which are operated by the same co-owners, and the Adams Morgan gay sports bars Pitchers and A League of Her Own, which are also operated by the same owner and share the same building.

The four bars, which also offer dining service, announced their proof of vaccination requirement shortly after D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser on Thursday issued a new order reinstating the city’s requirement that facial masks be worn inside all businesses and other public establishments.

The mayor’s order applies to all vaccinated and unvaccinated people over the age of two. It was scheduled to take effect 5 a.m. Saturday, July 31.

At a July 29 news conference, Bowser pointed to a new U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance issued two days earlier recommending that fully vaccinated people resume wearing masks indoors in places where transmission of the coronavirus is considered “substantial” or “high.”

The mayor said that, at the advice of her public health experts, she decided to issue the new order to help curtail the rising number of COVID cases in D.C. over the past month or more due to the rapid spread of the virus’s delta variant, which is surging throughout the nation. Like other parts of the country, Bowser and D.C. Department of Health Director Dr. LaQuandra Nesbit said people who are unvaccinated in D.C. make up nearly all of the newly infected cases.

“I know D.C. residents have been very closely following the public health guidelines, and they will embrace this,” Bowser said in referring to the new mask requirement.

The four-page order released by the mayor’s office, similar to the city’s earlier mask requirements, allows indoor patrons of restaurants and bars to remove their masks while “actively” eating or drinking.

But some representatives of restaurants and bars have pointed out that other jurisdictions, including Maryland and Virginia, have followed the CDC’s initial policy of making mask wearing a recommendation rather than a requirement.

“Mayor Bowser’s announcement that nightlife hospitality patrons must wear a mask indoors when not ‘actively eating or drinking’ renders the reinstated mandate essentially unenforceable and results in the rule being reduced to a largely theatrical requirement,” said Mark Lee, director of the D.C. Nightlife Council, a local trade association representing bars, restaurants, nightclubs, and other nightlife related businesses.

“The greatest disappointment for many venue operators and staff, however, is that the mayor’s decision does not allow an option for establishments to admit only fully vaccinated patrons and be exempt from the mandate, as a number of other jurisdictions across the country have done,” Lee said.

John Guggenmos, co-owner of the bars Trade and Number Nine, told the Washington Blade he and his co-owners adopted the proof of vaccination policy as an added means of protecting the safety of both patrons and employees of the two bars.

“We’re hopeful that this will be in effect for just a few weeks or a month or two,” Guggenmos said. “Our patrons have always been very supportive,” he said in referring to the city’s public health directives last year and early this year in which masks were required up until May of this year.

Guggenmos said Trade and Number Nine will allow an alternative to the vaccination requirement if patrons provide proof of a negative COVID-19 test conducted within the previous three days of their admission to the bars.

In its social media postings, Pitchers and A League of Her Own said their proof of vaccination requirement was based on the concern for the health of their patrons and staff.

“We will require proof a COVID vaccination until further notice at Pitchers/ALOHO and masks per the mayor,” a Facebook posting says. “We take guidelines and the health of our patrons and staff very seriously. We will accept a picture or hard copy of your COVID vaccination card,” it says. “No exceptions, no arguing, no talking to the manager.”

Tammy Truong, owner of the gay bar Uproar Lounge at 639 Florida Ave., N.W., told the Blade the bar has no immediate plans to require proof of vaccination as a requirement for admission, but Uproar will fully comply with the mayor’s order requiring indoor masks.

Justin Parker, co-owner of the nearby gay bar The Dirty Goose at 913 U St., N.W., told the Blade he and his staff decided on Friday to also put in place a requirment that patrons show either proof of vaccination or proof of a negative COVID-19 test within the past five days. He said a 5-day window for the COVID test, which the CDC allows in some cases, was chosen rather than three a requirement to accomodate people who may not be able to get tested during weekends.

Owners of other D.C. gay bars couldn’t immeidately be reached. But the Blade could not find any announcements by the other gay bars as of Friday afternoon that they planed to put in place a proof of vaccination requiremenet. 

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