America, Meet Your Next Congressman: Clay Aiken’s Winning Formula

From recording artist to Congressman: Here's why the government is achin' for Aiken

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Clay Aiken visits the SiriusXM Studios on November 16, 2012 in New York City.

News broke this morning that American Idol alum Clay Aiken, who was the runner-up during the show’s second season in 2003, has announced his intention to run for Congress in North Carolina.

Politically-minded citizens everywhere have already begun to picture it: Aiken walking the hallowed hallways of the House of Representatives. Aiken nodding hello to fellow lawmakers. Aiken aking his seat at a mahogany desk. And most importantly, Aiken getting results for the American people.

And yet, bafflingly, Aiken’s detractors have already begun to question his qualifications. How exactly is a reality show runner-up  — even one with a legendarily velvety voice — qualified to lead this country? There’s never once been a single congressperson who’s been embarrassing or ill-suited for the job, so why should we risk electing one now?

These questions are foolish: Clay Aiken is perfectly qualified for Congress. Here’s why.

Clay Aiken CD Signing at Virgin Megastore of "A Thousand Different Ways" in Hollywood - September 26, 2006

Gregg DeGuire / WireImage / Getty Images

He’s Used to Being Berated in Public

Between Simon Cowell’s vicious teardowns on American Idol and Donald Trump‘s belligerent diatribes on Celebrity Apprentice, Clay Aiken is no stranger to being shouted at by unpleasant men under a spotlight. It takes a truly sturdy constitution to endure that kind of abuse. Aiken should be fine when it comes to the endless debates and the ordeals of campaigning. At this point, he could probably survive a phone call from Alec Baldwin. (And that’s saying something.)

He’s Popular With Middle-Aged Suburban Women

The Claymate fervor may have died down considerably since its mid-noughties heyday — but then again, does Claymate fervor ever really die? Rarely, if ever, has a honey-piped redhead made so many women weak in the knees. Given that women outnumber men at the polls, support among his constituents bodes well not only for Aiken’s election odds but his popularity rating in general.

He’s Already Had a Gay Sex Scandal

Before officially coming out of the closet in 2008, tabloids repeatedly ran stories linking Aiken to gay men with whom he was supposedly involved. (Of course, the “scandals” in this case were little more than having consensual sex with men who’d then run and blab about it to the National Enquirer, so that’s not such a big deal. Still very electable.) The important thing is this: Although Aiken will run as a Democrat, the secret gay trysts that litter his past should give him plenty of common ground with many members of the Republican party. Remember: nothing hastens an aisle-crossing like some good, old-fashioned locker room banter!

Clay Aiken Christmas


America Already Knows Which Side He’ll Take in the War on Christmas

While other politicians hem and haw about frivolous things like “the separation of church and state,” it should be perfectly clear where Aiken stands on this controversial holiday: for it. With a handful of Christmas albums and TV specials under his belt, his commitment to unbridled Yuletide cheer is beyond reproach. In fact, don’t be surprised if he reinstates the draft — the War on Christmas is no joke.

Four Words: Paula Abdul Congressional Testimony

What does Congress actually do, day-in and day-out, besides pass terrible laws, shut down the government, and behave foolishly in clips that gets used to comic effect on The Daily Show? Nobody knows! But just imagine how much spicier and jazzier the average congressional session will become when Aiken calls upon his famous friends to testify about important issues. Just imagine it: Celebrity Apprentice winner Arsenio Hall can testify on the subject of entrepreneurship. Ruben Studdard can deliver a stirring speech about the importance of smooth, soulful vocal stylings. Paula Abdul can brief everyone about what it’s like to be Paula Abdul. (That will probably be one of the sadder ones.) The possibilities are endless.

The evidence is plain: There has never been a better fit for Congress. And sure, it’s still just a pipe dream, but you might as well start getting used to the following phrase: President Aiken.

MORE: Clay Aiken, American Idol Star, Running for Congress