Immediately after Clay Aiken lost his bid for a seat in Congress on Tuesday, Esquire TV announced it would air a 4 hour docu-series in 2015 based on Clay’s campaign. Apparently, a camera crew had been following the candidate the entire time. Hedging his bets maybe?
In any case, some Los Angeles heavy hitters who had contributed to Clay’s campaign aren’t happy about the docu-series deal, according to FrontiersLA.com.
another celebrity with American Idol connections, former judge, Steven Tyler, fired off an angry note to Clay. Back in September, Steven had organized an LA fundraiser that took place at the home of Extra correspondent, Michael Corbett.
*Correction. It’s not Steven Tyler the rock star. This Steven Tyler is a gay actor and producer active in politics.
ETA: The gay Hollywood power hitters who fund raised for Clay could not have been very happy that he put marriage equality and gay rights on the back burner during his campaign.
Again, I am sorry for the loss on your bid for Congress, but apparently you had yourself covered with a reality TV show deal the entire time, just in case you didn’t win. I cannot speak for the NC Voters or contributors, but I can speak for myself and many of your Los Angeles supporters when I say we feel duped, taken advantage of and lied to. When we were asked to sign waivers by your film crew, we were told it was for a BBC documentary that would not air here in the United States.
I have received calls from many supporters at the LA fundraiser all demanding that the LA event not be included in your TV show, as the crew misrepresented use of the filming. It is obvious you had this TV deal prior to the votes being tabulated as GOOD MORNING AMERICA announced the deal just hours after votes were barely in.
On a personal level, I worked very hard convincing people of your integrity, viability and the need for them to donate. It all reflects badly on my credibility amongst donors because of your actions. Now it looks like I deceived donors.
I do hope you realize this prevents you from ever running again for an elected office. You will no longer be credible as someone that wants to help the public more than your need for fame. Had the LA donors known you would personally benefit from their donations and appearance at the event – they would not have donated to your campaign. Your TV deal was announced all over TV yesterday and in the Los Angeles Times today.
It pains me to write this because I so believed your Congressional Campaign was for the right reasons and the greater good. Obviously I misjudged you.
Whoa. If Clay runs for office again, it looks like he can forget about support from the entertainment community.
Tyler had more to say when contacted by FrontiersLA.com:
I do my homework before raising money for any candidate or cause. I refuse to ask my friends to donate money for something that I do not wholeheartedly believe in. Not only did Clay have me convinced that he was the man we needed to send to Congress, but he convinced everyone at the LA fundraiser.
It was the first fundraiser I have done in 20 years where almost every attendee wrote an additional check on their way out. They thought they were making a good investment.
And Clay was a hard sell in LA because we were making donations to our own local and statewide races and donors thought of him as an entertainer and not a representative of “the people.”
I think Clay’s idea of documenting his race was a good one. It’s very important that we learn just how much a candidate puts into the job from the very beginning. What I disagree with is him personally benefiting from that documentary (as a reality series). And those of us who signed releases were told it was for air on BBC only and not in the US.
Oh boy. Here’s the thank you to supporters Clay posted after he lost the election on Tuesday: