Jimmy McMillan, the mustachioed and gloved gubernatorial candidate who debate- karate chopped his way into the zeitgeist with his rousing rhetoric, "The Rent is TOO DAMN HIGH," has been chatting with dozens of media outlets about his breakout performance during Monday's debate. But now it turns out that his own rent for a one-bedroom in Flatbush is just $800/month—and the NY Times reports, "Mr. McMillan said in an interview on Tuesday that for at least the last decade, he had lived rent free. 'We’re like family,” Mr. McMillan said of his landlords. 'They don’t want me to pay any money at all. I am basically living there rent free.'" Can he work his magic for the rest of us?!?
The Times explains more:
Mr. McMillan said that he moved into his apartment, a one-bedroom on Nostrand Avenue in Flatbush, Brooklyn, in the early 1980s but soon fell behind on rent when he left his job in the Postal Service on disability. The landlady, Mr. McMillan said, admired his Vietnam War service and forgave the back rent and, eventually, the future rent, too. In exchange, he did maintenance work, and after she died in 2003, her heirs continued the tradition.
Building manager Viola Hampton told the Post, "The rents should go up but they haven't. People don't have that kind of money... Everybody here is like a family," and said of her tenant's platform, "He's not necessarily talking about himself. He's talking about the poor person."
McMillan is paying $900/month rent on a rent-stabilized place in the East Village for his son. Also, per the Times article:
"Mr. McMillan declined to show the apartment, saying he feared for his neighbors’ safety, and fielded questions from the driver’s seat of his parked graphite-colored Honda CR-V, which is also his mobile office. When he travels, he sleeps in it, too; in the back were a sleeping bag, a bottle of Scope Original Mint mouthwash and a pair of nunchucks he keeps in a seat-back pocket. That weapon happens to be banned by the state he wants to run. “My main object is to protect myself,” he said. “I will worry about the consequences later on.”
McMillan boasted, ""People want me to help set up the Rent Is Too Damn High Party in other states. The way people are talking right now, I'm going to be the next governor," and wants another chance to debate, "I talked to a few of the other candidates and we agree: There needs to be more debates, and at least one upstate." And here's more McMillan, from The Last Word: