The Third Presidential Candidate Who Made His Name in Baltimore

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Vermin Supreme
Vermin Supreme in 2011. Photo by Marc Nozell.

He’s not polling as well as retired Hopkins neurosurgeon Ben Carson (or even former mayor Martin O’Malley), but he’s a conversation-starting presidential hopeful who made his name in Baltimore, that name being Vermin Supreme.

Supreme is a perennial presidential candidate known for outrageous campaign platforms and a boot he wears on his head. He recently registered for the New Hampshire primary (as a Democrat) the same day as Carson. Supreme’s $1,000 registration fee was reportedly paid with $50 dollar bills, each stamped with the phrase “not to be used for bribing politicians.” As shown in a YouTube video, he also brought a bunch of guns with him, all of which he was relieved of, apparently due to Carson’s secret service entourage.

Supreme (who does not reveal his birth name) was born in Massachusetts, but said it was when he moved to Baltimore in the ’80s — to attend “art school” briefly before dropping out — that he came into his own. “That is where Vermin Supreme came into being,” he told the Concord Monitor in 2012. “I was going to be a club owner, all club owners, all booking agents, they’re all vermin and I was to be the Vermin Supreme.”

Supreme’s presence really rounds out Baltimore’s representation in the presidential primary. Carson highlights its world class medical prowess, O’Malley its history of troubled police-community relations, Supreme its tendency to incubate arty weirdos with a mission.

Learn more about Supreme’s everybody-gets-a-pony initiative and watch him file in New Hampshire in the following video:

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