Infinite Culcleasure at a candidate's forum Monday night
Burlington mayoral candidate Infinite Culcleasure vowed to stay in the race "until March 6 and beyond" despite what he called "efforts to marginalize our campaign."
The political newcomer posted a campaign update on his website Thursday under the headline "Message from Infinite: We're Stronger Than Ever." The post appeared days after Culcleasure and the two other mayoral candidates, Carina Driscoll and Miro Weinberger, participated in a televised forum about the issues.
In his post, Culcleasure decried aSeven Days cover story that examined whether Weinberger, a two-term incumbent with plenty of campaign cash, could lose the contest. Driscoll, a Progressive Party-backed independent candidate, has political experience and is the stepdaughter of Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), a connection she's touted on the campaign trail.
Culcleasure lamented "being marginalized based on such superficial grounds as how we look and our lack of campaign resources," which he referred to as a "practice of white normative politics in Burlington and Vermont."
The independent candidate said he has not coordinated with Driscoll and has no plans of dropping out of the race.
Culcleasure pushed back against the notion that his campaign will split the opposition vote and allow Weinberger an easy path to victory.
"We should all be prepared for a little discomfort and not act in fear of a potential Miro victory, but rather in hope of transformative democracy in Burlington," he wrote.
After 45 years of existing on the margins of American society, being coerced to drop out of a campaign for public office has been one of the most anti-democratic adventures I have ever experienced. Since politics is not a career goal of mine, but a means for survival, I have no choice but to resist.
Culcleasure, a community organizer, has never held elected office. He's running on a platform of increased citizen decision-making in city government and bottom-up economic development that emphasizes the city's social and environmental needs over the bottom line.