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Yup, that's Minnesota congressional candidate David Sandbeck's ad on PornHub

Yes, David Sandbeck is running for Congress, and yes, you may have heard about it on PornHub.

Yes, David Sandbeck is running for Congress, and yes, you may have heard about it on PornHub. David Sandbeck

If you have been browsing PornHub lately, you might have found a little something unexpected in the mix. And not just the regular kind of unexpected, like a surprisingly good Bob’s Burgers parody. You might have found a small, sparsely designed ad for Minnesota congressional candidate David Sandbeck.

The ad asserts that Sandbeck paid for it, and encourages voters to support him in the 2020 Democratic Caucus. The phrases “single payer health care” and “legalize marijuana” flank the borders in bold red letters. It’s innocuous-looking, but as out of place on PornHub as a piece of celery in a bucket of Halloween candy.

Commenters say it's not exactly a typographer's dream, but it gets your attention.

Commenters say it's not exactly a typographer's dream, but it gets your attention. u/CU18 on Reddit.com

Sandbeck confirmed that he did in fact place that ad, and he is running for Congress. He’s quick to mention that he paid for it out of pocket rather than using campaign funds on such a “controversial” site, but he’s certainly not sheepish about it.

“I’m looking for opportunities to reach out to voters that haven’t traditionally voted,” he says. He says Facebook has been giving him the runaround rather than running his ads, and major national newspapers won’t let him run op-eds unless he pays them “hundreds of dollars.” How else, he says, is someone without a ton of money supposed to get noticed?

Sandbeck is a lifelong St. Paul resident, a millennial, and a perennial volunteer for campaigns, causes, and conventions. After becoming more and more frustrated with mainstream, moneyed candidates tuning out their progressive supporters – he cites the 2016 presidential election as a prime example -- he decided primaries should be more competitive. He wants everyone to get their ideas heard, and he doesn’t believe grassroots candidates like himself get a fair shake in the Democratic Party.

The key planks in his platform – besides reforming the primary process -- include single-payer healthcare, legal marijuana, and cutting down the massive budgets dedicated to the “military industrial complex.”

“End the pay to play political process,” his campaign site says. “I do not have [a] PAC or large corporate donors. I am accountable to voters.”

He’s actually not the first political candidate to try this. Danish pol Joachim B. Olsen (of the Liberal Alliance party) is running an ad on PornHub that says, roughly translated, “When you are finished gambling/masturbating, vote for Jokke!”

There are those who may complain about the relative classiness of advertising on a porn site, but that doesn’t bother Sandbeck. He thinks people are far more disgusted by the outsized role money and political dynasties play in elections than the fact that some adults turn to the internet for their entertainment needs.

And he may be on to something. Redditors were more put off by the janky, amateurish design of the ad than where it was found. It’s been described as “so bad it’s good,” something a 12-year-old could have made on Windows 98, and remarkably consistent with PornHub’s other advertisers.

“It isn’t classy,” Sandbeck says. “But I’ll tell you what – politics isn’t classy.”