Clay Aiken is tapping his “American Idol” fan base to raise money for his congressional campaign, offering a personally recorded song to the top donors.
The Democrat’s campaign recently sent an email to 1,000 fans who had already contributed to the campaign asking them to join the CA4NC Circle at one of four levels: Loyalty, Gold, Platinum and Diamond.
“You’ve been with Clay from the very beginning and have supported him through every minute of the last 11 years,” wrote Nick Leisey, a longtime Aiken friend who recently joined the campaign as finance director. “Your enthusiasm and support continues to be crucial, this time in helping him claim the seat in NC’s 2nd District.”
The Diamond level is reserved for those who give $5,200, the maximum allowed contribution to the campaign. The personalized recording comes on an autographed CD with a handwritten note from Aiken, who finished runner-up on the reality TV show in 2003.
The lower-level donors are entered into a raffle to win their own recording.
The top two levels, Diamond and Platinum ($2,600 minimum donation), get the most perks. Among them: a personalized membership card, a photo with Aiken in a signed “Clay for NC” frame, tickets to an election night party and other campaign events, autographed campaign merchandise and entry into a raffle to spend a day on the trail with the candidate.
It also include entry to “private after-hours meet ’n greets” after fundraisers in Boston, Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Miami and Washington.
The minimum donations to join the circle at the Loyalty level begin at less than $10 and include entry into weekly raffles for Aiken-related prizes.
“We want to give people who feel invested in Clay’s career for the last decade a way to feel more invested in the campaign,” said campaign spokeswoman Tucker Middleton.
The campaign listed all the details of the program on a campaign website that went offline Tuesday after The News & Observer asked about it. Middleton said it went offline for maintenance and “To clarify some language.”
Aiken narrowly won the Democratic primary in May to challenge Republican incumbent Rep. Renee Ellmers in a district that favors GOP candidates.