Raj running for Congress “on an environmental platform,” is “not your typical Republican”

Apprentice 2 candidate Raj Bhakta is officially running for Congress, and he’s trying to form “a coalition of Republicans, Democrats and Independents” in order to work towards “congressional reform.” Last week, Raj received and “accepted the nomination of both the Montgomery County and Philadelphia Republican parties to challenge incumbent U.S. Rep. Allyson Y. Schwartz (D-13) in this fall’s election,” according to the News Gleaner.

Raj, not surprisingly, is running as a Republican. He’s so fiscally responsible that he apparently designed his campaign logo using WordArt. He’s going to need all the money he can get: His opponent “raised $1.4 million in 2005 and has more than $1 million in the bank as she fights to retain the seat,” while “Bhakta reported roughly $100,000 cash on hand. He said Monday that he has raised about $250,000,” the AP reports.

reality blurred has obtained a copy of an e.mail Raj recently sent to supporters, in which he describes himself as “not your typical Republican” because “one of [his] leading priorities is growing a greener, more environmentally responsible Republican Party.” In other words, he’s running as if he were a Democrat.

Here’s the letter:

Dear Friend,

I am just writing to thank you for helping me shock all the political pundits and talking heads across the country.

They said a businessman turned reality T.V. show star couldn’t do it. But this week I officially accepted the nomination of the Montgomery County and Philadelphia Republican Parties for Pennsylvania’s 13th Congressional District. And I have you to thank for it.

As you know, I am not a politician. I am a businessman who is fed up with the scandals from both parties who have lost their way in Washington D.C. because they’ve become consumed with power as opposed to fighting for the people who sent them to office.

I recently issued a challenge to my opponent, career politician Allyson Schwartz, who has already spent 16 years in government, saying that should I win I would term limit myself to three terms. I’ve called on Schwartz to do the same. Unsurprisingly, she has yet to respond.

I believe career politicians like Allyson Schwartz are part of the problem. Politics was never meant to be a career. It was meant to be a service.

With the Jack Abramoff, Duke Cunningham and Bill Jefferson scandals of late – voters of this country have lost faith in the very people they entrusted with high office. I believe that whether you are a Republican or a Democrat, when you serve too much time in public office, you become part of the very system you are supposed to check for corruption.

Not your typical Republican, I am running on an environmental platform. One of my leading priorities is growing a greener, more environmentally responsible Republican Party, which advocates what we all want: clean air, livable communities, conservation and environmental protection.

But at the center of my campaign is a coalition of Republicans, Democrats and Independents throughout the 13th District unified in their call for congressional reform.

Both my parents came to this country with little but hope and a belief in the American Dream. Our so-called leaders in Washington D.C. are destroying that dream every day with corruption, power grabbing, and scandal.

Voters have a real choice this fall, they can keep the same career politicians in office who are part of the problem or they can clean house and elect new leaders with fresh ideas and credibility to address the changes needed. I think it’s time to clean up the House.

Sincerely,
Raj Bhakta

Ex-‘Apprentice’ announces run for Congress [AP]
An ‘Apprentice’ readies his run for Congress [News Gleaner]
Raj for Congress

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.