June 13th, 2019 – Comedian Ben Gleib wants your vote to become the next president of the United States. And while he may not have as many detailed policy plans as Elizabeth Warren, he has one really big card to play: who better to take on the world’s biggest heckler than a comedian?
Gleib already has a proven track record shutting down hecklers after working in comedy since the early 2000s. Last summer, he gained widespread attention after a heckler interrupted a standup set in Illinois for making a fairly tame joke about Donald Trump. After the show, another person came up and told him to quit taking digs at the president because “you talk like that, you’re gonna get a bullet in the back of the head.”
Fast forward a year and Gleib is still talking like that except now it’s part of a stump speech. On May 13th, he announced his candidacy for president on social media in a video that opened with another comedian who has tangentially landed in the political world.
A clip of Bill Maher talking about the need for a comedian to take on Trump in 2020 is shown before Gleib makes his case.
“Donald Trump is the greatest risk to our nation but also the best trash talker in political history,” Gleib says to camera. “I am not a politician or a greedy millionaire or billionaire, but I’ve dealt with narcissistic crybaby hecklers like Trumps hundreds of times before and I’ve never been defeated.”
Since announcing his candidacy, Gleib has taken both the traditional and non-traditional route on the campaign trail. While you can see his standup tour dates at bengleib.com, you can also check out his take on the issues at gleib2020.com. The hopeful politician takes on several popular issues such as gun reform, healthcare, automation, and criminal justice but still brings his comedic touch.
When it comes to automation, Gleib has titled that issue “NOT LETTING THE ROBOTS TAKE OVER.”
He notes that “some jobs will be automated of course, but we cannot allow entire work forces to be eliminated. Call me crazy, but I value humans. Have you not seen every science fiction story ever? Letting the robots take over DOES NOT END WELL.”
Diving into gun reform, Gleib has framed the debate as “GUNS ARE COOL, KIDS ARE BETTER.”
Expanding on that thought, he says “I will always support the second amendment. But that doesn’t mean our children should fear being shot at school. School is annoying enough. We will register all gun sales, even private sales. We will have thorough background checks, fully analyzing both criminal history and mental health. You shouldn’t be able to get a gun faster than you can get toilet paper on Amazon Prime. No more loopholes. Loopholes are easy to shoot through.”
Gleib held a campaign kickoff event at the Hollywood Improv last month where he laid out his vision for our country and defended the sincerity of his campaign.
“Wanna stop corporate crime? Here’s an idea no one’s talking about. Combine white collar prisons with regular prisons. You wanna change priorities in this country? Flip the salaries of teachers and congress. I’m a comedian. It’s a pretty amazing job. There’s no reason I should ever wanna give that job up and normally I would not. But these are not normal times. Millions still don’t have healthcare, can’t afford housing, work multiple jobs. We no longer have the time for incremental change. Is this a serious campaign? You’re damn right it’s a serious campaign. There are too many issues in this country.”
While some people continue to question whether or not this is a joke or a serious bid, Gleib hasn’t slowed down in his fight for POTUS. Holding town halls and asking for donations to make the debate stage, he keeps making the case that a comedian can save our democracy.