Traditionally, Congressional candidates go out of their way to create a family-friendly image. But self-described “left wing liberal” Mike Dickinson has decided to forego spouse-hugging and baby-kissing in favor of a more modern approach to campaigning: taking to Twitter to offer $100,000 in exchange for naked pictures or video of a 19-year-old girl. Oh, and he owns a strip club.
Rotund and balding, Dickinson, 34, first declared he would run as a Democrat in Virginia’s 7th District where Eric Cantor, who recently lost to David Brat in the Republican primary, is the sitting Congressman. But Dickinson never filed to run as a Democrat, and is now running as a write-in for the seat. (Dickinson’s website, dickinsonforcongress.com, is defunct, but he claims it’s just because he’s in the process of creating a new one.)
Dickinson first entered the spotlight earlier this year, when he declared war on Fox News, which backfired after he was owned by On the Record host Greta Van Susteren. Dickinson then went after the National Rifle Association, an organization he slammed for being “pure trash.” Anyone “sucking the tit of the NRA,” he said, “can get off my train.”
Also not welcome on Dickinson’s train: people who harm animals. But staging a photo-op at a petting zoo or talking passionately about his childhood dog is just not this candidate’s style. Dickinson is instead proving his love for our furry friends by attempting to “character assassinate” Kendall Jones, a cheerleader from Texas who became a subject of controversy after photos of her posing triumphantly with big game she successfully hunted in Africa made the rounds on the internet.
In an interview with The Daily Beast, Dickinson said that he is a life-long Democrat who has always voted blue. He especially admires Elizabeth Warren and Barack Obama. He hates Senator Ted Cruz with a burning passion. Dickinson insists he supports women’s rights and sees nothing wrong with asking for nude photos of a 19-year-old girl.
You can listen to the full interview here:
At first, animal rights was not going to be part of Dickinson's platform, but after becoming aware of the issue while listening to Howard Stern one day, Dickinson changed his mind. "I saw what Kendall Jones was doing and learned about her and just throughout she was a terrible person," Dickinson said.
Dickinson justified requesting the pictures of Jones: "She's over 18. She's old enough to vote. She's old enough to serve in the military. She's old enough to go to Africa and kill an animal. Why don't we ask an animal how it feels about her killing it for fun?"
As a liberal, Dickinson assured he “very much” supports women’s rights. "Anybody that does not support women's rights when it comes to abortion or equal pay or anything else—it's impossible to take them seriously.”
Dickinson revealed to The Daily Beast that he knows first-hand what it means for a woman to be strong and independent, because he owns a strip club. "They empower themselves by dancing, by everything else…I mean, they take guys' paychecks. Guys come into places and they take their paychecks and they walk out richer for it, so I don't know any other industry where that happens." Dickinson declined to say the name of his strip club, for fear that someone may “go there and try to shoot up the place.”
What would Dickinson do if Jones wanted to work in his unnamed strip club? “She can apply and we'll see…I'm not going to discriminate against her. I'm sure I employ some women now that hunt animals."
Attacking Jones, Dickinson said, was a response to how dirty he believes the conservative movement plays. "The right-wing and the NRA has shown no shame when it comes to attacking Democrats and attacking Americans. God forbid, they get worked up because one person plays as dirty as they do.”
“You know, is it the nice thing to do, to go and look for pictures of Kendall Jones and investigate her?” he asked. “It’s probably not the nice thing to do. It's probably not the moral thing to do. But look at all of the stuff that the right wing and the NRA has done that shows no class."
Dickinson told The Daily Beast he believes Republicans are waging a war on women, but that his own behavior most certainly does not belong in the same category. “My behavior is a war on one particular woman who has made herself a public figure." Dickinson pointed to sexist attacks on Nancy Pelosi made by some on the right-wing as justification for his harassment of Jones.
Asked why he just assumed there are naked pictures of Jones in existence (there is no evidence whatsoever that any exist) Dickinson said: "I mean, I would think that there are some out there. I think sexting is what's going on in America right now. I mean, I read some article where it’s an epidemic now, where 60 or 70 percent of middle schoolers are sexting somebody."
Dickinson assured that he is not attracted to Jones because "I like brunettes" (I guess I’m out of luck) and the "point of the pictures is not so much for me. I don't really care about it. I mean, I work in the adult industry, so I've seen thousands of naked pictures of naked women, or whatever you want to say. The point is to embarrass her a little bit, humiliate her a little bit, assassinate her character."
Dickinson then declared that we should be proud of nudity in America. Asked how, if he believes that, nude photos of Jones would assassinate her character, he said: "because these right-wing people are prudes when it comes to sex. They're very closeted when it comes to sexuality. I mean, if you look at the top Porn Hub sex terms, all the top search terms in the South are things like 'interracial' and 'ebony.'"
Were he elected to Congress, Dickinson believes his policies would be better for women than Cantor’s have been. Reminded that Cantor has never asked for naked pictures or a sex tape of a teenage girl on the internet, Dickinson said: "he hasn't, but I don't know what goes on in his home life. I don't know if he's loyal to his wife or what not. Typically the kind of customers that we see at strip clubs are husbands who are white collar who have a wife and family at home."
For his campaign, Dickinson is considering the slogan “Vote for the Pervert” in honor of Larry Flynt, for whose Hustler he claims to have written for in college. Dickinson categorically denied that he is actually a pervert.