Jack Wu, who's been associated with the highly controversial Westboro Baptist Church, is vying for a spot on the Kansas State Board of Education. The anti-evolution, fundamentalist Christian candidate has raised no money, and spent none, according to recently released campaign records, but some say that may not matter in his conservative district.
According to the Associated Press, Wu said he has always planned to spend nothing on his campaign in the state's 4th District. Wu, the GOP candidate, recently had to file his official campaign reports, and the documents confirm he has collected only $5 in cash contributions, received $9.99 in donated goods and services, and spent zero.
“I don’t like asking for money,” Wu told AP. “It’s not my style.” In comparison, Wu's opponent, the incumbent Democrat Carolyn Campbell, so far has raised $16,000, and spent about $12,300.
But in the conservative district, the "R" (for Republican) by Wu's name is enough to assure him a certain number of votes, Kansas Democratic Party Chairwoman Joan Wagnon told AP. In little-known races, she said, voters tend to stick to party lines.
However, the Kansas Board of Education election is attracting more attention than normal this year due to a couple of factors.
Among those is Wu's connection to the widely unpopular Westboro Church. According to Raw Story, Wu has said he attends their services, but is not a member. The Topeka-based organization is infamous for picketing the funerals of military service members and carrying obscene, anti-LGBT signs.
Additionally, five of the board's 10 spots are on the ballot this year, with three contested races. The elections are being watched by education experts because of their possible role in an emerging conflict over science standards for public schools, according to The San Francisco Chronicle. This year, the board may vote on new standards regarding both evolution and climate change.
According to his website, Wu is running in order to "to throw out the crap that teachers are feeding their students and replace it with healthy good for the soul knowledge from the holy scriptures."
Let's be specific. Evolution should never be taught in public schools as science. Evolution is false science! God made the heaven and the earth and created humans from the dust of the earth! The very bad teachers that teach that men descended from apes via evolution need to have their teaching licenses revoked. Yes, students should be taught that God created everything.
Clay Barker, executive director of the Kansas Republican Party, said Wu "does not have any connection or been in contact with the Kansas Republican Party, other than filing as a Republican — something the party has no control over," according to the Topeka Capital-Journal.
The Westboro Baptist Church first gained national notice at the funeral of Matthew Shepard who had been robbed, brutally beaten and left to die in Laramie, Wyoming.
The Westboro Baptist Church threatened to picket Steve Jobs' funeral but called it off when the memorial service was held privately.
The Westboro Baptist Church picketed Elizabeth Edwards' funeral after she died of cancer.
The Westboro Baptist Church protested Lance Cpl. Matthew Snyder after he had died serving his country in Iraq. The protest of the hate group went all the way to the Supreme Court.
While it is not clear that the hate group ever got there they declared their intent in this charming YouTube Video staring the head hater himself who tells the people of Norway -- God Sent the Shooter. Read more about it here.
The Westboro Baptist Church protested the Illinois Holocaust Museum on the eve of Rosh Hashanah
The Westboro Baptist Church picketed the funerals of victims of Tucson shootings. They agreed not to picket the 9 year old Christina Taylor Green in exchange for air time on a local radio show.
Westboro Baptist Church picketed the funeral of recording artist Michael Jackson. Members of Westboro have also recorded a song titled "God Hates the World," an adaptation of Jackson's charity single, "We Are the World."
The Westboro Baptist Church protested in tornado devastated Joplin, Missouri when President Obama visited.
Read more about it The Foo Fighters vs. Westboro.