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Mr. Potato Head once ran for mayor of Boise. He just couldn’t get a head

With seven people running to be the next mayor of Boise, most aren’t toying around.

It’s a head-to-head (to-headtoheadtoheadtoheadtohead) matchup. And the race has certainly raised eyebrows.

But in 1985 in Boise, a toy, that’s a head, that has removable eyebrows — mashed its way into the race for mayor.

In an era of politicians that seem interchangeable – this politician truly was interchangeable.

Mr. Potato Head Boise
Mr Potato Head for Mayor of Boise button. Photo courtesy Dan Winans

Mr. Potato Head.

People Magazine even wrote about it, and far out-punned anything I could produce:

“Mr. Potato Head’s a-peeling personality seems to have forestalled the mudslinging, backbiting and dirty dealing that have become staple fare in modern American politics. Outgoing Mayor Richard Eardley has endorsed the earthy candidate, and in a rare display of competitive largesse, rival Dick (sic) Kempthorne freely offered this advice to the idealistic newcomer: “Go in with your eyes open, stay thick-skinned and try to stay out of hot water.” Obviously Kempthorne is unafraid of getting mashed in the polls next Tuesday, although at last report Mr. Potato was definitely a head.”

Ultimately, Dirk Kempthorne won the race for mayor, but the toy did net four votes. It’s unclear if the voter support went straight to his… well. Ya know.

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Don Day - BoiseDev Editor & Founder
Don is the founder and publisher of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow. Contact him at [email protected].

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