Sunday, May 07, 2006

What's It All About, Raj?

Raj Bhakta comes close to fitting the definition of a celebrity – someone who is famous for being famous.

Only Raj didn’t quite make it in his first run. In 2004, he was one of the contestants on the show "The Apprentice," but got bumped off by The Donald in week nine.

I guess that would make him someone famous for wanting to be famous. A celebrity zygote. In short, a wannabe.

Now comes Chapter Two of the Raj Bhakta story.

The 30-year-old is running as a Republican for Congress this year in Pennsylvania's 13th District, which straddles Democratic Northeast Philly and the Republican suburbs.

It is a thoroughly post-modern effort.

Raj – the product of an Indian father and Irish mother – is a rakish guy, with a sultry stare and Bollywood good looks. He favors bow ties and Winston Churchill quotes.

His opponent is U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz, a liberal Democratic ending her first term.

From Reality TV to Washington, D.C. What a great storyline.

It turns out, Raj's campaign could be on TV.

As The Hill reported last week, Raj is in negotiations with a New York film company to create a documentary of his campaign. The hook is this: Raj seeks campaign workers. Thousands apply. He winnows them down to 15. Their life is filmed (24/7) to produce a documentary (or maybe a series?)

As The Hill reported:

Bhakta says the documentary will not be an egocentric affair, insisting that the focus will be on workers who typically “toil away in anonymity,” ignored for their tireless work. “Usually the candidate is the center of the documentary,” he says. “In this case, it’s going to be the staff.”

There is Reality TV and then there is reality.

Schwartz is the near-prohibitive favorite in this race. She has close to $2 million on hand. Raj has raised $225,000. (As The Donald will tell you: money talks.)

After he announced, The Smoking Gun reported that Raj had a DUI in 1997. There was another in 2004.

There's a school of thought that Raj's true talent lies not in politics but in self-promotion.

So, if he ended up in Congress, he'd fit right in.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Begs to ask the question: Don't most politicians true talents lie in self-promotion, or else, how would they get where they are?

6:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Raj has a few holes in his resume, he needs to account for his time in Florida when his little ego destroyed yet another company.

10:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


8:28 PM  

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