|WOL: How did you get interested
in running for mayor of New York?
Kramer: I ran for mayor four years
ago as a publicity stunt. Giuliani had a lock on the election, and
anyone who was a viable candidate wouldn't risk running against him and
looking like a loser. Only Al Sharpton was running, and I figured
even I could beat him. I made an announcement that I was running
for mayor, called a buddy at AP and told him, and next thing you know it
was on the wire and running all over the world. There was no organization,
just me and a couple of wackos [doing signature gathering] who were stoned
all the time and interested in meeting women. We had all these women's
signatures, but they were from Sweden or Australia. But then I issued
a statement that running for mayor was too much work, because I figured
if running was so much work, then actually being a mayor would be even
This time, my buddy Gary Baumgarden, who
is head of CNN radio in New York, asked me if I had any thought of another
run for mayor. I told him, listen, Jesse Ventura [Reform Party-affiliated
governor of Minnesota] has really inspired me. If a professional
wrestler can be governor, why can't I be mayor? So that little sound
bite went to 1,600 CNN affiliates, and the next morning Howard Stern and
Robin were talking about how Kramer might run again for mayor, and a Libertarian
guy happened to hear this and called me and said would you be interested
in running as our candidate. I visited the Libertarian web site,
I read their agenda, and I figured I'm pretty much on the same page with
most of their stuff, so I agreed to run as a Libertarian. Then I
had to go to the nominating convention, I had to run against "none of the
above." Fortunately I prevailed, 26-4, it would have been horrible
to lose to "none of the above." Since I've become the candidate,
there have been 30 or 40 hits on TV, a hundred on radio, and newspapers
all over the place. Seinfeld shows in 90 countries, so anytime anyone
writes about me, it goes on the international wire.
WOL: How serious are you?
Kramer: I am very serious.
My character is known to be a slacker without much of a work ethic, but
I do want to say that if I am elected mayor I will work hard for the first
time in my life. The voters should know I'm well rested. Years
and years of resting, so I have lots of stored up energy. I would
like my campaign to be a national referendum. Go to my web site --
-- and see that there's some substance to my campaign, then make a contribution,
and let's stick a big middle finger up at all these politicians.
I think this is something worth doing.
WOL: Mayor Giuliani really has it
in for New York City pot-smokers, arresting 60,000 of them last year.
What's your stand on the marijuana issue?
Kramer: Obviously, I think that's
a tremendous tragedy. First of all, as a Libertarian, I believe less
government is better government and the government shouldn't have the right
to intrude on the privacy of our lives and tell us how to live. You
should be allowed to do anything you choose to do as long as you don't
hurt anybody. So, all the victimless crime laws I think are wrong.
Not just marijuana smoking, but using needles, too. Some people use
needles to decorate themselves, others use them to get high. I don't
see much difference.
WOL: Who is your constituency?
Kramer: If I can get the dopers of
New York City to vote for me, I will win this thing by a landslide.
The problem is getting them to remember to go to the polls that day.
But in all seriousness, my appeal would be to college students, first time
voters, recent high school grads, people who have avoided politics because
there was never anyone they could relate to, I think that's my constituency.
Of course, among those people, probably 60% of them are dopers or stone
heads or recreational smokers or whatever. We'll be setting up tables
on college campuses. There has to be a movement, if we can get to
that place, we'll definitely make an impact. We could have two Democrats
and two Republicans running, and that could split the vote and leave me
WOL: What other Libertarian issues
are you championing?
Kramer: Education, vouchers for schools,
charter schools, home schooling. The city of New York has a monopoly
on education, there has to be choice.
WOL: How are orthodox Libertarians
responding to your candidacy?
Kramer: I haven't had any trouble.
I think the fact that I am carrying the Libertarian banner is a huge plus.
The Libertarian Party is a third party in American politics, and they don't
get a lot of publicity or credibility. A lot of them are not electable,
and if you want to be a political party you need to get into office, otherwise
call yourself a philosophy club or something. The national party
is very much behind me. They've featured me in their newsletter,
they've sent out e-mails, they've been very helpful. I've helped
out my fellow Libertarian candidates, and that helps me gain credibility
within the party.
WOL: Mayor Giuliani has entertained
us all with his romantic scandals. Would a Kramer administration
be as scandalous?
Kramer: There will be no scandals
in my administration, because I admit to everything. I've done it,
I've been there, there are no skeletons in my closet. It's a walk-in
WOL: Would a Kramer administration
be as entertaining as Giuliani's reign?
Kramer: I would certainly hope so.
I would be the first non-politician to have this office. I'm a guy
who's been involved in the entertainment world, a guy who likes to have
fun. Naturally, if I become mayor, I will have to surround myself
with people to deal with serious issues, but I will make this the most
fun city in the world.