He’s only been on the campaign trail for a day, but American Idol contestant–turned–congressional candidate Clay Aiken is already distancing himself from President Obama. He blamed the president for playing a part in the partisan gridlock in Washington.
“I think there is systematically a problem in Washington with people not talking to each other and not working together, and I don’t think the president is immune from that criticism,” said Aiken, who is looking to challenge North Carolina Republican Renee Ellmers if he wins the Democratic primary. “I think that the president could do a better job reaching out to congressional leaders to try to come to workable solutions for both parties and for the people of the country.”
Aiken also shied away from discussing the president’s “evolution” on same-sex marriage, which he announced the day after North Carolina voted for a constitutional amendment defining marriage as between a man and a woman in 2012.
“I don’t think that’s an issue in this particular election,” Aiken, who is gay, explained, instead shifting to issues such as the economy and jobs. “It is something that’s a settled issue in North Carolina — it’s not something that a congressman has anything to do with.”