Former New York Resident Changes Name to Santa Claus, Runs For House of Representatives
You better watch out! You may have heard the story of Santa Claus? No, not that one. This guy.
The 72-year-old from North Pole, Alaska (yes, that's for real), recently threw his name into the race for the lone House seat in Alaska. He'll be facing off against some well known advisories, such as former Governor Sarah Palin, according to Fox 9. Some are calling him a long shot, but the white bearded, rosy cheeked, self described independent progressive plans to one day head to Washington. It's safe to say that if he ever arrives in the nation's capital, there will be an awful of folks probably on his naughty list.
Is He For Real?
But who is this man?
He was once known as Tom O'Connor. He already has a bit of a political history, as he has served on North Pole's City Council since 2015, according to the Washington Post. He also actually ran for President twice, and is an international peace prize winner, says the Post. People says that this particular Kris Kringle has no party affiliation, but considers himself similar ideally to Bernie Sanders on a number of issues.
Saint Nick's New York Roots
He also has ties to New York. The Post says he once lived in Manhattan's East Side. He once went to school for a PhD, though never finished. The Post says he would go on serve as special assistant to the police commissioner, and was even head of security of the Port Authority. Sources say this whole experience exposed him to some of the rougher elements of society around him. Perhaps it was around that time that he wanted to stand for change and do something very different with his life?
Fox says he eventually found his way out to Lake Tahoe, NV in the early 00s. It was there he joined the Celtic Anglican order Anam Cara for spiritual guidance. Maybe he felt a bit more free in his new environment, so, at that point, he decided to grow out his signature beard. He also got into activism and helped a number of non-profit organizations in Nevada. It was also around then that some friends suggested he change his name to Santa Claus. It all came to a head one day when he said he was praying for spiritual guidance when someone drove by in their vehicle and shouted "I love you Santa!".
He went ahead and legally changed his name to Santa in 2005.
Fox says he would pursue his activism by phoning senators and other state politicians about a number of issues, such as child's rights, and medical marijuana advocacy. It was also around this time he made his move to North Pole, AK to feel more at home with his new identity. After all, when you think of Santa, you don't really think of the Vegas strip and casinos. It was the perfect fit.
Claus says he found that if he phoned a local politician over an issue and they ignored him, he'd simply call the local TV station and they'd make it into a story for all to see. "Local politician disses Santa." It drew attention from the public. Then, he says his phone would be ringing with that politician's staff looking to actually talk about the issue at hand. It definitely helps to be really known as Santa Claus.
Could this lead him to bigger and better things? Time will tell.