As this year’s election results trickled in it became clear which candidate was winning, but if you lived in Brazil you might not be voting for a party, but an animal!
Smaller parties standing tall
The 2015 election saw a lot of focus on smaller parties, especially when it looked like they might be required to link up with a larger party to form a coalition. Candidates such as Nicola Sturgeon from the Scottish National Party and Leanne Wood joined David Cameron and Ed Miliband on stage for televised debates.
We’re proud to have helped out with lots of events leading up to the election by providing chairs and tables, including debates - which can help voters decide the party that represents their views the best. It’s not always clear what candidates might stand for though, and even what they’d do if they were in power - particularly if the winner is a… dog!
Here are some of the most strange winners of elections we’ve come across - it may be a while before we see any of these in a British parliament or standing for mayor.
1. That’s Grrr-azy!
When a candidate is well known and well liked by his constituents then that’s a great start if he wants to become mayor. It looks like this not only applies to people but animals where the Californian town Sunol is concerned. Town mascot Bosco Ramos beat two other (human) candidates to be named Sunol’s mayor in the 1980s - and what’s surprising is he was a dog! More specifically the cute canine was a labrador rottweiler cross, and to this day the town has a statue to commemorate the pet and his position of power.
2. You’re kitten me…
Cats aren’t being left in the background when it comes to elections. Kitten Stubbs was also voted in as mayor in Talkeetna, Alaska. The local residents weren’t impressed with the other candidates standing for this position, so they launched a campaign for their feline friend. As well as becoming mayor, Stubbs has also proven a draw for tourists who like to visit him, and has a Facebook following of over 33,000 people.
3. Clowning around
Clowns aren’t usually associated with political parties, unless there’s some heated conversations going on! Voters in Brazil decided to throw caution to the wind and actually vote in a real clown to congress. Called Grumpy, the candidate openly admitted from the start he wouldn’t be lobbying for policies or trying to change the system in any way, but would instead find out what other politicians were up too - and this ‘manifesto’ managed to win him 1.3 million votes.
4. Who… Me!?
With so much focus on individual party leaders in this year’s campaigns, it would be very hard to imagine a candidate who accidentally won an election, but this has actually happened! Fabio Borsatti was just helping out his mate when he decided join the race for mayor. Until he volunteered to stand, his friend was the only person running for the position, and thought a lone candidate might result in a low turnout at the polls. Unfortunately the good deed backfired and instead of his friend sweeping to victory, Fabio won with 58 per cent of the vote.
5. Th-Horny Issue
Going by this list, it looks like lots of voters around the world prefer animals in power to people, and Brazil is no exception. Part of the reason the country has such bizarre candidates is that there are repercussions when residents choose not to vote, resulting in them expressing their discontent in novel ways. This was part of the reason why Cacareco the rhino was elected to the city council gaining over 100,000 votes. There was a re-vote eventually but not before the horned candidate was taken off ballot papers.