Featherstone: Rupert Boneham Forms Exploratory Committee for Governor’s Race

(Editor’s Note: By Josh Featherstone, Originally posted at his blog, Featherstone on Government. The LPIN candidate selection process takes place at our annual convention in April. LPIN Leadership and Rupert’s team will be exploring this idea further in the coming weeks.)

Rupert Boneham, famous for his appearances on TV’s Survivor, may be interested in an even bigger starring role. Rupert just put up a new website that says he has formed an exploratory committee to consider a Gubernatorial run in Indiana.

From that website:

I have formed an exploratory committee to evaluate becoming a candidate for Governor of Indiana. I hope to make a final decision in the coming weeks, but wanted to take time to discuss my decision with family. friends and the community that has so graciously supported Rupert’s Kids.

I have spent my entire adult life serving my community and I see an opportunity to make a difference for Indiana. While surveying the current choices for our next Governor, I do not see anyone that has an understanding of what daily life is like for many Hoosiers nor anyone who appears to understand the harm that misguided government policies are doing to our communities. It is obvious that career politicians are not the answer because they are often the problem. I will be evaluating whether or not hardworking Hoosiers are ready for a new voice with new ideas.

While I may be best known for my time spent on the television show Survivor, I feel my greatest achievement has been working with troubled youth through my non-profit charity, Rupert’s Kids. With Rupert’s Kids we have successfully taken youth with troubled pasts and given them a sense of purpose and self worth while opening a world of opportunity to them. By helping them become confident and productive members of society they learn the value of eduction and a strong work ethic.

I have operated my charity for over 20 years without government handouts. Over time, it has become more difficult to help people because of government red tape and roadblocks. This has prompted my decision to explore bringing back the principles of hard work and self-reliance to Hoosier government.

Just as I have shown our youth these principles, I think it’s time that someone in the political sphere discusses them as well.

I’ll be spending the next several weeks talking to Hoosiers while I explore the idea of launching a campaign that will discuss solutions instead of bureaucratic reforms and platitudes. We can do better to ensure that every person in our state has the opportunity to reach their full potential.

Life is good. Be You. Give Back.

Outside of Survivor, Boneham, as stated, has long been involved in his own organization, Rupert’s Kids. Rupert’s Kids is a charitable organization that teaches youth, especially those too old to be considered for many youth programs, but also too young to be considered an adult, how to be responsible for their actions and how to grow into better people on their own. Respectably, Rupert’s Kids has never taken any government funding.

His entrance into the political world may come as a surprise to most. The hints have been there for a while, though. Several months ago, a Facebook page popped up titled “Rupert for Governor?” Initial speculation was that it was just a random fan’s page.

This summer, though, Rupert made appearances at the Libertarian Party booth at several of Indiana’s many summer festivals, including Indy Pride.

To look at Rupert, you’d assume any political thoughts were a joke. He’s certainly not one with a traditional politician’s look. To hear him speak, though, is enough to make you think again. Boneham proves himself to be an elequent and well-informed speaker. Despite the “rough around the edges” appearance, Rupert’s speeches make it clear he has a genuine clue what can be done to improve the Hoosier State.

The next few weeks are bound to be interesting. I’m sure the media, both locally and nationally, will zoom in on this unique race. Many comparisons will be made between Rupert and Jesse Ventura. While they are drastically different people, the most important question will be “Can Rupert win?” That is a question that only time can answer. It’s gonna be a fun ride for sure, though, between now and Novemeber 2012. I’m looking forward to it.

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