Joshua Collins for Congress
Former truck driver Joshua Collins is running for the House of Representatives on a platform of socialism, a green new deal, and abolishing the CIA.
He's achieved viral notability and is betting TikTok and Twitter will take the place of traditional advertising to achieve his goals.
In the year leading up to his campaign, Collins and his wife moved their belongings to storage and lived in the truck to save money.
Collins was an owner-operator, someone who owns his own truck and chooses jobs to take on.
Joshua Collins isn't the typical congressional candidate, and his path to running for office hasn't been typical, either.
The 26-year-old former truck driver is running an unconventional campaign for congress in WA-10, banking on the free and low-cost publicity he can get on TikTok in place of spending any money on traditional ads. As a young trucker who says he didn't attend college due to prohibitive costs, Collins says he knew that taking time off to campaign without any income wasn't an option for him.
Collins and his wife Zelzah Baez put most of their possessions in storage and spent the better part of a year living out of their truck, which they owned.
In October 2019, Collins tweeted "I lived in my truck for the last year. I moved out of my apartment & put all my stuff in storage to save money so I can afford to campaign full-time next year."
These photos show what that year on the road was like.
As an owner-operator, Collins owned his truck and operated as a small business.
Collins told Business Insider that he found jobs hauling freight in locations he needed to get to. He was able to earn money and save up for the campaign.
"I believe that workers should have more freedom and more say in how their workplaces run. And there's no one in this country who kind of understands that more than someone who's an owner-operator truck driver," Collins told The Cooper Point Journal. "All the money, the wealth that I generate with my labor goes to me."
The truck was a Freightliner Cascadia, which comes with a sleeper cab and a 40-inch by 80-inch bed.
Collins, his wife, and their husky moved into the truck for the trip.
Joshua CollinsCollins and his wife are both licensed as truck drivers, so they would switch off to maximize driving time.
"My 'good trucking story' is something that repeats all over the country, all the time. A lot of people don't know this, but truck drivers' only workplace protections are 'hours of service,' so our days are limited to 14 hours on duty (with 11 hours driving max). I team-drove with my wife, meaning our day was 28 hours long for years," Collins told Law and Crime in December.
During that year, Collins told Business Insider that they spent time hiking in the different locales they visited.
Joshua CollinsThey visited different cities across the country, including Washington, DC.
Joshua CollinsAlong with being tourists, Collins told Business Insider "we tried to work in political events, tried to get in interviews," including an interview with the Young Turks in LA.
Joshua CollinsAhri the husky made herself comfortable in the truck.
Joshua CollinsCollins has talked about how trucking informed his political beliefs.
He told Business Insider that he's not sure if he'd be able to go back to trucking if he doesn't win election.
"I think the experience of a lot of truck drivers is very similar to mine where the government has failed them at every turn," Collins told FleetOwner. "When it comes to needing a college education, almost every truck driver saw that as something where the government failed them. We have millions of truck drivers and almost all of them are people who couldn't afford to go to college or couldn't afford to go into other industries. So, truck driving was, for a lot of us, including me, the only other option aside from maybe the military."
Read more about Collins' campaign here.
Read the original article on Business Insider