Earlier today, musician and North Carolina native Clay Aiken announced his intent to seek the Democratic nomination for NC’s 2nd Congressional District, currently held by Tea Party darling Renee Ellmers…so how does Ellmers, who’s already facing a potential challenger from her right, respond to Aiken’s announcement?
Clay Aiken, who has had a successful performance career since his appearance onAmerican Idol in 2003, announced Wednesday that he is running for Congress against North Carolina Tea Party incumbent Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC). Though he faces two other Democratic contenders in the primary, Ellmers is already attacking his candidacy, including some anti-gay insinuations:
–“It speaks volumes to the state of the N.C. Democratic Party that the primary is shaping up to be a choice between the failed Perdue Administration’s Keith Crisco, a lawyer who doesn’t even live in the district, an activist who’s (sic) own party rejected her in the last democrat primary – and Aiken, a performer whose political views more closely resemble those of San Francisco than Sanford,” Ellmers spokeswoman Jessica Wood wrote in an email. “Renee best represents the values of the voters in the 2nd District and remains focused on fighting for their families.”(Think Progress)
In past years, state Republicans would’ve either, (a)openly come out in support of Ellmers’ remarks or (b)clammed up and claimed abject ignorance over her words…not this time; former state GOP director Dan Gurley came out almost immediately and slammed Ellmers’ for those remarks…
Dan Gurley, former executive director of the North Carolina Republican party, criticized the statement, calling Wood’s comments on behalf of Ellmers “offensive and childish” and rebuking her as “uncreative and “small minded.”(Think Progress)
Given Ellmers’ consistently anti-LGBT voting record over the past few years, its’ not surprising that her campaign would pander to the bigoted views of those on the right; this kind of rhetoric doesn’t surprise me and though, given the district’s strong red tint (Cook PVI of R+11), Clay Aiken will have a tough time competing for the district should he win the nomination, hearing the kind of rhetoric his potential opponent is already hurtling at him makes me really hope Aiken wins in November just to shut Ellmers up.