Updated 04:57 PM EST, Mon, Mar 01, 2021

Congressman Clay Aiken? Sources Say 'American Idol' Alum Running for Congress in North Carolina

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Back in 2003, hundreds of thousands of Americans voted for Clay Aiken on the reality singing competition "American Idol." Although he came in second to Ruben Studdard, there's speculation that the singer may soon be petitioning Americans to vote for him once again--this time for a seat in Congress.

According to inside Democratic sources, the 35-year-old Raleigh, N.C. native has taken preliminary steps toward a run for Congress in North Carolina's 2nd congressional district, reports the Washington Blade. The seat is currently occupied by Tea Party favorite Rep. Renee Ellmers, who was elected in 2010.

One source said the singer has been in contact with the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which recruits and helps promising Democratic candidates campaign for the House of Representatives. The source also said Aiken has consulted with political strategist Betsy Conti who has worked with former N.C. Gov. Bev Purdue and former Vice President Al Gore.

A second insider also told the news outlet that Aiken met with pollsters at Hart Research Associates in Washington, D.C., to review survey data in December.

Since appearing on "American Idol," Aiken has led a successful music and stage career, selling over six million albumss and starring on Broadway, reports CBS News.

He's also worked as a LGBT activist and co-founded the National Inclusion Project, which works to help disabled children. In 2010, he appeared at a Capitol Hill briefing to urge lawmakers to pass anti-bullying legislation that protects gay students.

In 2008, he came out of the closet during a cover story on "People" magazine.

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