Santa Claus wins write-in campaign for North Pole, Alaska, city council

Photo by Flickr user Amy Meredith:

He made a list. He checked it twice. Now he's on the city council.

A man who legally changed his name to Santa Claus won a write-in campaign to sit on the city council of North Pole, Alaska.


The Fairbanks News-Miner reports Claus, previously known as Thomas Patrick O'Connor, launched his write-in campaign when no candidate formally declared for the two open city council seats.

The former chamber of commerce president handily snapped up 58 votes to join the council of the 2,200-person town southeast of Fairbanks. The other candidate, Elyse Dawson, won with 29 votes.

"I'm really happy with the candidates we did get. I think Santa Claus and Elyse Dawson will be great,"  North Pole City Clerk Kathy Weber told The News-Miner, presumably with a straight face.


In case you're not very good at geography, North Pole, Alaska is obviously nowhere near THE North Pole. The city's website claims the town was named that in 1952 in hopes of attracting a toy manufacturer looking for the perfect mailing address. Speaking of mail, it's also where children's letters to Santa end up, assuming they are properly stamped. And don't forget the world's largest statue of Santa Claus (pictured in the header image of this article).

Just joining government, and the new councilor already has statues in his honor. That may beat the previous record, probably set by Lenin.

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