News

‘American Idol’ Clay Aiken’s wins N.C. primary

‘American Idol’ Clay Aiken’s wins N.C. primary

CLAY FOR CONGRESS: The former "American Idol" contestant is running for office. Photo: Associated Press

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina (Reuters) – “American Idol” runner-up Clay Aiken won the Democratic nomination for a U.S. congressional seat in North Carolina on Tuesday, a day after his main challenger died from a fall, official results showed.

Aiken, 35, earned the party’s nod in the 2nd congressional district by just 390 votes over opponent Keith Crisco, according to a final ballot count from the May 6 primary.

Crisco, a former North Carolina commerce secretary, did not immediately concede the election last week, saying the race was too close to call.

The contest took an unexpected turn on Monday, when Crisco, 71, died after a fall at his home in Asheboro. Friends told local media he had planned to concede on Tuesday.

The official tally of votes reported by the nine counties in the district showed Aiken with 40.86 percent and Crisco with 39.49 percent, enough to avoid both a recount and runoff had Crisco lived.

Third-place finisher Toni Morris took 19.65 percent of the vote.

After news of Crisco’s death, Aiken said would temporarily halt campaign activities.

Aiken’s 2003 “Idol” appearance launched a successful singing career, but he took a break from performing to run for Congress in his home state. He will face Republican incumbent U.S. Representative Renee Ellmers in November.

(Reporting by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Nick Zieminski)

Recent Headlines

in Music

This week’s top rock tracks

foofighters

LISTEN: This week's top rock songs, according to the latest Billboard chart.

in Viral Videos

WATCH: The ‘Force’ is strong with this home

11-overlay

If you weren't already excited for the next "Star Wars" movie, this house will change your mind.

in Weird

Gold tooth dropped in red kettle

kettle

There's been diamond rings, silver bars, and four-leaf clovers but this could be the first donation of its kind.

in Music

Dennis DeYoung: Rock Hall hates ‘power rock’

dennisdeyong

The "Come Sail Away" hitmakers have been overlooked again, alongside peers like Journey and Foreigner.

in Viral Videos

WATCH: Airman ‘Santa’ surprises 6-year-old son at storytime

santa

Aaron Williams was sad that his dad, stationed in South Korea, wouldn't be stateside for the holidays ... but a little Christmas magic gave him a gift he'll never forget.