05.05.14 5:00 PM ET
From Drag Queen To GOP Candidate
Steven Wiles is a Republican candidate running an uphill campaign in central North Carolina outside Winston-Salem to defeat incumbent Joyce Krawiec in Tuesday's primary for state Senate. But, long before Wiles filed to run as a conservative opposed to same-sex marriage, he performed in drag as Miss Mona Sinclair at a gay nightspot called Club Odyssey.
It was revealed Saturday by the Winston-Salem Journal that Wiles, an aspiring GOP pol, performed as Miss Mona Sinclair while also serving as a promoter both for Miss Gay North Carolina America and Miss Gay Eastern States America. Eventually though, Wiles was suspended for "conduct unbecoming to a Promoter of the Miss Gay America pageant system." Wiles initially denied that he had performed as Mona Sinclair to the Winston-Salem Journal before eventually coming clean.
In an interview with Business Insider, Wiles declined to identify himself as "ex-gay" and described his past as a female impersonator as "an embarassment." The Republican candidate said of crossdressing "For me, from a religious standpoint, just for my life, for me, it just was not something that I wanted to continue. Of course it was an embarrassment, but you know, you move on. You live life, and you change, and you make yourself what you want yourself to be."
In an interview with the Winston Salem Journal Sunday, Wiles expressed his relief that this news was out “You know, it’s out now and other than being an embarrassment for my family, I guess I’m really glad that it’s out there and we can talk freely about it and people can make an informed decision."