Clay Aiken: 'I'm the universal punchline for everything gay'

Former American Idol runner-up Clay Aiken has joked that he is now “the universal punchline for everything gay” in a new interview with HuffPost Live. Aiken, who also served as a candidate for North Carolina’s Democratic House before losing out to Renee Ellmers in the general election (forever destined for second place it seems), has been the butt of many jokes over the years since his rise to fame. Family Guy has referenced the singer, actor, author, politician and the many other things Aiken has under his belt (no, we don’t mean that) in one of the show’s episodes where when asked by Richard Dawson on a quiz show to name a popular fruit Stewie responds with Clay Aiken. clay-aiken_joseph_dreamcoat-650 Ironically, in a video chat with his official fan club, Aiken said he had a crush on Seth McFarlane, creator of Family Guy. Sorry Clay, but we feel you may be fighting a losing race with that one too. Aiken is also frequently referred to by his sometime friend, comedian Kathy Griffin, in her skits. Griffiths referred to Aiken as ‘Gayken’ long before he (finally) came out in 2008. Aiken says he's happy to laugh off the jokes, but does express concern for the impact the jokes may have on LGBT youth. “What does that make that 15-year-old in Indiana feel like,” he said. Having exhausted nearly every other entertainment outlet, Aiken is now promoting The Runner Up, a four part documentary series shedding light on his congressional campaign in the US. WORDS: KEVIN LONG