Darth Vader might not be the next president of Ukraine, but he might be the next mayor of Kiev or Odessa. An election commission squashed his presidential ambitions last month, but the Sith Lord doesn’t seem perturbed.
According to Vader’s party website, he is registered and ready to stand in the mayoral elections on May 25. Vader represents the Internet Party of Ukraine, which wants to cut bureaucracy, provide free classes and slash a number of taxes.
Vader’s full name on the ballot is Darth Nikolayevich Vader and the IPU refuses to reveal what his name was previously. But according to presidential election officials who ran his paperwork for that office, Vader’s "real" name is Viktor Shevchenko. He’s a 58-year-old Kiev native that didn’t make too many friends at the election commission.
“This might look like an innocent joke. But this is no laughing matter,” said Central Election Commission member Ihor Zhydenko, “Someone was trying to turn the presidential election into a farce.”
Vader doesn’t agree. According to him (and the IPU’s bank account), they weren’t kidding. They shelled out more than $225,000 to register as a presidential candidate. They don’t appear to be kidding about his mayoral candidacy either. They’ve got their sights set on more than just Kiev and Odessa.
“They stole my victory at the presidential elections, but failed to steal my will for the victory. I assure all my supporters – my decisiveness has never been stronger than it is now,” Vader said. “That’s why I made a decision to run for mayor, mayors of all key cities in Ukraine. Soon I will be in your city, too.”
Vader won’t be waltzing into the mayor’s office in Kiev though. He’ll have to beat a number of established politicians. The current mayor is running for reelection, and so are some members of the Ukrainian parliament (Verkhovna Rada), including the former boxer and Euromaidan leader Vitali Klitschko.
While Vader and the IPU are dead serious about his candidacy, he isn’t all serious. He’s stormed a number of government buildings with his feared stormtroopers, demanded a parking space for his spaceship and promised to make an “empire out of a republic,” in Ukraine.
And his slogan? “Darth Vader -- a candidate with a human face!”