The Rock wrestles with political ambitions again after White House vote

Dwayne Johnson, who defied doubters to become WWE champion in the ring and Hollywood’s highest-paid actor of 2016, suggests he would be open to running for political office, even US president, one day

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 15 November, 2016, 12:43pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 15 November, 2016, 12:49pm

After parlaying a professional wrestling career as “The Rock” into leading roles in Hollywood, Dwayne Johnson is entertaining the idea of jumping into the political ring, including perhaps even a run for the White House someday.

Johnson, 44, who stars in the upcoming Disney animated film Moana as the voice of demigod Maui, said the excitement surrounding last week’s presidential election had renewed public interest in him running for office.

“I love my country, I’m extremely patriotic and I also feel, especially now, leadership is so important, great leadership is so important, respected leadership is so important,” said Johnson, one of the stars of the highly popular Fast and Furious franchise.

Asked specifically about a potential White House run, Johnson replied: “If I felt like I could be an effective leader for us, and surround myself with really high-quality leaders, then sure, I would.”

It is not the first time Johnson’s name has been mentioned in political circles.

Earlier this year, Johnson took to Instagram to thank a Washington Post journalist who said he had a “weirdly plausible path to a political career” as a mixed-race registered Republican from Florida, a swing state in the presidential election.

While Johnson did not specify which office he might seek, when he might run or which party he would represent, he said he thought that running a business as a producer in Hollywood had given him a discipline he hoped he could apply to politics.

If I felt like I could be an effective leader for us, and surround myself with really high-quality leaders, then sure, I would [consider a White House run]
Dwayne Johnson

“I’ve found really good success in being able to galvanise people in a positive way and continued to push them, as I’ve pushed myself along the way too, because I walk what I talk, daily, which I think is an important quality,” he said.

If Johnson does take on politics, he would be following another former WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) alumni, Jesse “The Body” Ventura, who served as governor of Minnesota, and body builder-turned-action star Arnold Schwarzenegger, who served two terms as Republican governor of California.

Known for his catchphrase: “Can you smell what The Rock is cooking,” Johnson still participates in occasional WWE matches, alongside producing and starring in HBO’s sports dramedy Ballers and the upcoming Baywatch film reboot.

If people are rolling their eyes at Johnson one day becoming president, know that people rolled their eyes when he pursued pro wrestling, and later Hollywood, too.