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A Man With A Bucket On His Head Ran To Unseat Theresa May. Why? Well ...

British Prime Minister Theresa May stands between Lord Buckethead (right) and Elmo, because — well, because sometimes democracy is weird.
British Prime Minister Theresa May stands between Lord Buckethead (right) and Elmo, because — well, because sometimes democracy is weird.

You might be wondering about the guy wearing a bucket on his head.That's OK. When broadcast news outlets panned across the row of candidates standing beside British Prime Minister Theresa May on election night in the U.K. — revealing several respectable-looking gentlemen, then a cape-draped figure without a face — a number of people had questions, just like you.His name is Lord Buckethead. He ran to unseat May as representative of the Maidenhead constituency.And he got 249 votes.That might be surprising, given that the honorable intergalactic space lord ran on some pretty radical positions — many of which, in true democratic spirit, excepted him entirely. Here's an abridged list of his rather extensive platform:

  • "The abolition of the Lords (except me) ...
  • "Nationalisation of Adele: in order to maximise the efficient use of UK resources, the time is right for great British assets to be brought into public ownership for the common good. This is to be achieved through capital spending. ...
  • "A moratorium until 2022 on whether Birmingham should be converted into a star base. ...
  • "Stop selling arms to Saudi Arabia. Start buying lasers from Lord Buckethead."

He has a music video too, naturally.Lord Buckethead's appearance was part of something of a political tradition in the U.K., where it's not uncommon for all of the candidates for a particular parliamentary constituency — no matter how, well, eccentric — to stand side by side as the vote is decided. That's why, if you scanned just a little farther along the line, you might have noticed a person dressed in a giant Elmo costume.It's also why, elsewhere in the country, a candidate called Mr. Fishfinger — who according to The Guardian, "changed his name by deed poll to take part in the election" — stood behind the night's local winner, Tim Farron.Fishfinger got 309 votes, by the way.And as the BBC notes, Lord Buckethead himself — or at least some person dressed as the star lord of buckets — has become something of a tradition in his own right. The broadcaster reports the character has been around at least since 1987, when he took on another British prime minister, Margaret Thatcher. (And got 131 votes.)Perhaps Lord Buckethead said it best when he sang, euphonious voice muffled by his noble bucket: "You never knew that space lords would do that." Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.