‘American Idol’ Alum Clay Aiken Announces Run for Congress in North Carolina

Corey Cesare
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Clay Aiken originally gained national recognition in 2003 when he appeared on the second season of American Idol. Since finishing the season in second place, Aiken has gone on to share more of his music and become the fourth highest selling American Idol alum in history. In 2022, he is shifting his career to run for congress in North Carolina.


American Idol Alum Runs for Congress

On January 10, Aiken took to Twitter to share a three minute video announcing his run for congress. The beginning of the video shares that a lot has changed for him since American Idol. Before the series, he was set to become a special education teacher, but being the runner up on the show paved a different path for him. It has been almost 20 years since the second season of the show, but Aiken still has a big voice.

“A lot has changed for me too, I came home, I came out, I became a father. These days my life looks a lot like yours than Justin Biebers, I can promise you,” he said. “One thing that has never changed for me is how much I love my home state. North Carolina is the place where I discovered first that I had a voice and that it was a voice that could be used for more than singing.”

It’s obvious that Aiken’s tactic is to mention how his voice has been heard nationally before. After becoming a singer for many years, appearing on Broadway, and writing a memoir, he’s putting emphasis on how his voice has been heard by a lot of people, and now he wants to be the voice for the people of North Carolina.


Aiken Strives to be North Carolina’s First Gay Congressman

Aiken went to talk about how North Carolina used to be one of the most progressive states in the south. He pointed at the politician’s that have changed the way North Carolina is as a state. He is running for office in hope of becoming the south’s first gay congressman.

This is not Aiken’s first time running for office in the state of North Carolina. In 2014, he ran for the United States House of Representatives in North Carolina’s second congressional district. In this run, he was able to win the democratic primary, but lost in the general election.

Since American Idol, Aiken has had a successful music career. He released five albums, went on 11 tours, and has sold over five million albums in total. He’s also written a book, had a Christmas special, appeared on Broadway, and cameoed on multiple television shows.


Aiken had son, Parker Foster Aiken, with music producer Jaymes Foster in August 2008, and came out as gay in September of the same year.

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