Taking a cue from “The Gipper,” “Cooter,” and “Gopher,” former television star Melissa Gilbert is making a bid for public office, and she’s doing it without a silly nickname.
The former Laura Ingalls Wilder on Little House On The Prairie announced her candidacy for a Michigan congressional seat on Monday. (Gilbert moved to Michigan two years ago after marrying Poindexter himself, Timothy Busfield.) The actress, who recently appeared on Dancing With The Stars, has never held public office before, but she was president of the Screen Actors Guild from 2001 to 2005. Gilbert says in a statement she is “running for Congress to make life a little easier for all the families who feel they have fallen through the cracks in today’s economy.” Gilbert “believes that “building a new economy is a team effort, and we need to bring fresh voices to the table to get the job done.”
The actress will be running against first-term Republican Rep. Mike Bishop. According to Mashable, Bishop campaign spokesman Stu Sandler called Gilbert a “tax cheat,” nothing that she owes $360,000 in back taxes to the federal government and $112,000 to California. Gilbert responded that the tax debt was as a result of a divorce, a stalled acting career, and of course, the economy, and that she has entered a payment plan with the IRS.