By Jueseppi B.
The Rent Is Too Damn High Party is a political party in New York that has nominated candidates for mayor of New York City in 2005 and 2009, and for governor and senator in 2010. Jimmy McMillan was the mayoral candidate both times as well as a candidate for governor. In 2005, he received more than 4,000 votes, and more than 40,000 in 2010. The party has three registered members in the state. McMillan himself is registered as a Republican (previously a Democrat) for the purposes of running in that party’s primary elections.
As its name implies, the central tenet of the Rent Is Too Damn High Party is that rent in the city of New York is too high for its residents, and it should be lowered to relieve financial stress, end poverty and increase employment.
One of the taglines for the party is “breakfast, lunch, and dinner”, indicating that the party seeks to end hunger and poverty in New York City. The party sought to win “without a single vote from upstate New York.” The party website included a picture of New York with a giant “X” marked over upstate. McMillan surmises that reducing rent would “create 3 to 6 million jobs,” freeing up capital to give businesses a chance to hire people. This would, in turn, increase tax revenue. The party is in favor of writing off all taxes owed to the state, cutting property taxes for homeowners, consolidating the rent boards in New York, seizing unoccupied apartment buildings, reforming the state court system, and providing tax credits for commuters and free college tuition. The party opposes any cuts in spending related to education and elderly care.
McMillan was not opposed to same-sex marriage in the 2010 gubernatorial debate, replying to a non-rent-related question on the matter by saying: “if you want to marry a shoe, I’ll marry you.” McMillan has specifically voiced opposition to sex reassignment performed without the consent of the intersex individual, stating on his website: “They are normal human beings [...] just born different.”
On the topic of religion and family, McMillan’s website states “we need more reliance on the moral laws brought by religion and not limit out goodwill to our neighbors and co-workers to what the law demands alone.” One of the party’s platforms involves “restoring family values,” specifically desiring to ensure that one parent can remain at home to watch children.
For the 2009 mayoral campaign, part of the party’s name consisting of the word “damn” was removed from the official ballot on account of the name being 17 letters, two more than legally permissible under state board of elections guidelines. McMillan objected to the change, stating that he purposely used the profane word “damn” for its shock value. In 2009, Salim Ejaz ran for the party for the position of City Controller, without an endorsement from McMillan.
The word “damn” was restored to the party’s ballot line in 2010 by shortening “too” to “2″. McMillan ran for governor on the line, while Joseph Huff ran for the U.S. Senate seat currently held by Kirsten Gillibrand.
- New York City mayoral election, 2005
- New York City mayoral election, 2009
- United States Senate special election in New York, 2010
- New York gubernatorial election, 2010
The Rent Is Too Damn High Party’s Jimmy McMillan at the NY Governor Debate
Uploaded on Oct 18, 2010
October 18, 2010 — In a debate expected to be dominated by top New York governor candidates Andrew Cuomo and Carl Paladino, Jimmy McMillan of the Rent Is Too Damn High Party provided the fireworks. Watch his inspired views on karate, gay marriage, and, well, rent.
Jimmy McMillan Debate
Uploaded on Oct 18, 2010
Yawn, besides the occasional quip from the fomer prostitute, the NYS Gubernatorial debate was a snooze fest, save for the greatness that is Jimmy “Papa Smurf” McMillan of the “Rent is Too Damn High” Party. It’s mostly about rent to Jimmy, but it’s also about hunger. The audio sucked already, and the short echo near the end isn’t my fault! http://www.tommunisms.com For the shoe marriage clip, click this:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jEcIhB… and yeah, I made a quickie t-shirt…http://www.cafepress.com/tommunisms/7…
Well, it seems Jimmy knows why the rent is too damn high: he blames the Jews:http://www.jewlicious.com/2005/10/whe…
Jimmy also says an orthodox Jewish cabal planned 9/11. It could be just the Agent Orange affecting his mind, but this does take away from his goofy charm.
From The Grio:
Jimmy ‘The Rent is Too Damn High’ McMillan became a household name in 2010 when he ran for governor of New York against major contenders such as now-governor Andrew Cuomo.
His political mantra — ”the rent is too damn high” – resonated with many. Although his first fifteen minutes of fame eventually petered out, his slogan still has the juice to fuel his bid in New York’s 2013 mayoral election.
McMillan is back with the same catch phrase, this time delivered over a banging hip-hop track. As his rap anthem “Rent is Too Damn High” (produced by web site Animal NYC) states, he is “back on the scene” looking “lean and mean” — and is apparently just as popular as ever.
McMillan: An ‘American defender’
“I’m an American defender. I don’t make no apologies for serving my country,” the self-described Vietnam war veteran said when he stopped by theGrio’s newsroom last week, an acoustic guitar strapped to his chest.
He was greeted with the warm enthusiasm reserved folk heroes in these halls. As he sat down to perform an “unplugged” version of his single, McMillan described the attention he still receives when he walks city streets as “crazy.”
Does this make him the best person to run New York City among a wide field of experienced politicos? Maybe, maybe not. But he may have the name recognition necessary to make a big splash during his second brush with viral fame. McMillan’s video for “Rent is Too Damn High” has garnered more than 641,500 views on YouTube since it began circulating last week.
People definitely know who he is. And to hear Jimmy tell it, they also love him.
“I’m 66 years of age and I’ve been single for thirty years. Now I can get a girlfriend if I want one,” McMillan said of his local celebrity.
According to the martial arts teacher, women follow him asking, “can I have your autograph?” Men say, “can I take your picture?” Kids follow shouting, “let me touch your beard!”
And of course the question “whatchu gonna do to lower the rent!?” is often hurled at him, even late at night, the candidate for mayor said.
It’s about “changing the game”
But to him, running for the mayor of New York City is as much about disrupting the status quo of the political process as it is about holding public office.
“I’m not a politician. I’m here to change up” what McMillan called “the old attitude” and address “a bunch of lies that they’re telling.”
Some of those “lies,” he says, include landlords overcharging renters by raising rents too much relative to the renovations they may implement, which they are allowed to do by a limited percentage by law. McMillan also tasks politicians to stop focusing on creating low income housing, when it would be better to revise housing laws to improve existing stock and prevent people from being evicted.
While McMillan still asserts that the rent is too damn high, he also intends to use his 2013 run for mayor to awaken people to the fact that they have voting options — including, of course, the Rent is Too Damn High party.
Have Democrats and Republicans failed us?
McMillan believes that Democrats and Republicans have failed the American people after having had ample opportunity to improve the economy — and of course, housing costs.
“What I do in the city of New York is going to send a domino effect across the country,” McMillan told theGrio. “I’m here to represent the people.”
Look out for part two of our video interview with Jimmy McMillan later this week. Will his political agenda inspire a new perspective on the political system.
Thank you The Grio.
Filed under: "BARACK" The Vote, 2014 Mid Term Elections, Affordable Health Care Act, Black History, Campaign Ads, Causes, Celebrity, Charity/Giving, Democrats/Democratic, Economy, Education, Finance, Food, Fun & Games, Good News, Homeless, Information & Links, Jobs, Joy & Happiness, News, Politics, Speech, Stories, Videos, World News | Tagged: Democratic Party (United States), Jimmy McMillan, Kirsten Gillibrand, McMillan, New York, New York City, Rent Is Too Damn High, United States | 2 Comments »