Top 5 failed attempts by musicians to run for political office
Luther Campbell (aka Uncle Luke, aka 2 Live Crew front man, aka sister-paper Miami New Times columnist), has placed his hat in the race for mayor of Miami-Dade County. Nope, we're not kidding, but he's hoping to make a real change to the system, and he's taking the whole thing incredibly seriously (no booty babes yet). He's certainly not the first musician to run for public office, and it's doubtful he'll be the last. Folks like John Hall and even Krist Novoselic have done it successfully, but many have failed.
5. Jello Biafra
Jello Biafra ran for mayor in San Francisco in 1979 with the campaign slogan "There's always room for Jello." Among other things, his bizarre platform included forcing businessmen to wear clown suits within city limits, a citywide ban on cars, legalizing squatting and requiring police officers to campaign for their jobs . He didn't win, but that didn't stop him from running again in 2000, this time for president as a candidate for the Green Party, but he was beat out by Ralph Nader. If we're lucky, there will still be room for Jello in the future, if nothing else, so we can see him repeatedly flipping people off again.
4. Kinky Friedman
You'd think Texas would be into the idea of electing the man behind a song about physically beating up a drunken white racist, but apparently they're just not into the idea of an old Jewish country singer sitting in office. Like, really not into it. Friedman ran for justice of the peace in 1986 and governor in 2006 (with the rather witty campaign slogan "Why the hell not?"), but lost by large margins both times. He's actually a straight-shooter in a lot of respects. When asked about abortion, he replied, "I'm not pro-life, and I'm not pro-choice. I'm pro-football." He's also, somewhat strangely, very pro-smoking.
3. Joe "Shithead" Keithley
You wouldn't expect a guy with the nickname "Shithead" to have a fighting chance at politics, but apparently in Vancouver, the band D.O.A. is well-loved enough that people took notice of him. In 1996 and 2001, Keithley ran in provincial elections, and in 2001 he received the highest percentage of votes (but still not enough to get himself elected). We're pretty damn certain we'd vote for a "Shithead," if for no other reason than because he was honest. Oh, and it'd be pretty damn awesome to know that someone that was in D.O.A. was in office somewhere -- anywhere in the world.
2. Wyclef Jean
Poor Wyclef got booted out of the Haiti presidential campaign because he hadn't spent enough time in Haiti, but it still took him a few weeks to officially resign. The worst part about it wasn't that he wouldn't let go. When he finally did, his excuse was "so I could work on a new album." Seriously? He decided not to run for president because he wanted work on his album? Imagine if Mao had been like, "Uh, actually, instead of killing y'all and taking power, I'm just going work on my folk record, Sunny Mao and the Long March Jug Band, and smoke weed." Actually, come to think of it, that would have been awesome.
1. Dave Rowntree
Dave Rowntree is probably best known for his role as the drummer for Blur, but he's also an activist (as well as a pilot, solicitor and occasional programmer). He has unsuccessfully contested a Conservative seat in 2007 and 2008, and has yet to actually make it into office. But he seems to keep on trying anyway. We're pretty sure that if his campaign just showed the music video for "Coffee and TV" on repeat, we'd vote for him a thousand times over.