I just got a call-- a return call-- from the mayor pro-tem of North Pole, a deeply red small city near Fairbanks, Alaska. The mayor pro-tem is running for the Alaska at-large congressional seat, which became vacant when Don Young passed away. Mayor Claus is running in the special election to fill the rest of Young's term, but not for the term that would begin in January 2023. There are 51 candidates in the June 11th all mail primary. It's a jungle primary and the top 4 candidates, regardless of party, go to the ranked choice run-off. One of the other candidates showed me the first batch of polling.
Al Gross (I)- 31%
Sarah Palin (R)- 24%
Nick Begich III (Nazi)- 14%
Santa Claus (I- democratic socialist)- 11%
Mayor Claus, a hard core Berniecrat, is ahead of all 6 Democrats in the race. In 2016 Bernie trounced Hillary in Alaska 81.6% to 18.4%, taking 14 delegates to her 4. But the mayor didn't get his start as a Bernie supporter. Like me, he began his involvement in politics in New York City. And like me, he was an early supporter of liberal Manhattan congressman John Lindsay, who later became a Democrat. Lindsay appointed the then 23-year old Claus to an assistant to the Police Commissioner job.
Remember when I mentioned North Pole is a deep red town? You might wonder how Claus won his city council seat-- which is how he because mayor-pro-tem. People rated to him and his populist policy agenda. I'm sure the 100% name recognition doesn't hurt either. Imagine how that's going to play out in ranked choice voting!
He isn't soliciting endorsements and he isn't even accepting contributions, not even $5 contributions. He put $400 into his campaign and that's all he's putting in. This is how he describes himself on his one-page campaign site:
Santa Claus is an independent, progressive, democratic socialist, and shares many of U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders’s positions. He is a long-time advocate for child health, safety, and welfare. Santa believes ALL Members of Congress must find common ground, work together to represent their diverse constituencies, and move our nation forward in a productive manner that ensures happiness, peace, good health, and prosperity for everyone living in the United States, including Alaska.
Alaska is uniquely positioned to address many issues: energy, defense, climate, education, Arctic nations collaboration, infrastructure, especially broadband, indigenous and women’s rights, health, immigration, justice, medical debt, etc. and capitalize on Alaska’s myriad resources in ways that do not harm anyone. He has been a union member for a half-century and supports Medicare for All and the Congressional Cannabis Caucus.
Santa is a former: Member of the Alaska Public Broadcasting Commission, President of the North Pole Community Chamber of Commerce, and Senior Ranger for the Fairbanks North Star Borough’s Chena Lake Recreation Area (North Pole).
...Before his legal name change to Santa Claus in 2005, Santa served as Special Assistant to the Deputy Police Commissioner of New York City, Member of the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s National Defense Executive Reserve, while Director of the Terrorism Research and Communication Center, and Chief Safety and Security Officer of the U.S. Virgin Islands Port Authority. He earned his bachelors and masters degrees at New York University, where he completed his doctoral coursework in educational communication and technology and graduated from two seminaries.
Santa supports government policies that protect (1) child health, safety, and welfare, (2) our Creator’s environment, and (3) the weak, poor, and underprivileged, as well as policies (1) that recognize that science, education, and religion can co-exist, (2) that unite, rather than separate, (3) that promote peace, not war, (4) that favor natural remedies, not pharmaceutical sales, and (5) that demonstrate compassion. He believes that love, not fear, is the greatest power on Earth.
We're not asking you to chip in any money, because he isn't accepting any. Just think good thoughts! Which do you like better, the one up top or this one?