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An Ontario Man Running For Office Legally Changed His Name To "Above Znoneofthe"

He regrets nothing.

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An Ontario man running for office legally changed his name to give voters the option of "None of the above" on their ballots.

Sheldon Bergson a.k.a. Above Znoneofthe

Sheldon Bergson paid $137 to change his name to Above Znoneofthe and is running as an independent in the provincial byelection in Whitby-Oshawa.

The 46-year-old from Thornhill told BuzzFeed Canada he started his name change in hopes of getting on the ballot during the last federal election but missed the window.

“And then the byelection popped up and I thought I might as well get some use out of it,” Bergson said. (He still goes by his birth name for the most part.)

Bergson's name would have appeared last on the federal ballot as "Znoneofthe, Above" but Ontario ballots list first names first. So come Feb. 11, voters will see "Above Znoneofthe" as an option, which Bergson admits is confusing.

"I would have liked it better [the other way] but I'm still getting their attention and people are noticing it," he said.

Candidates will be listed alphabetically by last name, so the "Z" in his last name still puts him at the bottom of the list of candidates. His campaign slogan of "Scraping the bottom of the ballot" still applies.

Running for MPP in the Whitby-Oshawa by-election #whitbyoshawa #znoneoftheabove

There's one more complication: There's already a "none of the above" option in the Whitby-Oshawa byelection: Greg Vezina, the leader of the None Of The Above party.

Twitter: @GregVezina

Vezina told BuzzFeed Canada it's "fantastic" there will be two such options for voters, and he said he respects Bergson's commitment.

“It took huge balls for the guy to do what he did. I admire it."

Bergson is focused on a single proposal: giving locals a tax benefit for taking the 407 toll road.

He said any Liberal who becomes MPP would just be "another drop in the bucket" of Premier Kathleen Wynne's government, whereas he would actually be responsive to local concerns. However, he admits he doesn't actually live in the Whitby-Oshawa area.

"I'm a parachute celebrity candidate," he joked.

Ishmael Daro is a social news editor for BuzzFeed and is based in Toronto.

Contact Ishmael N. Daro at ishmael.daro@buzzfeed.com.

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