Dwayne Johnson for president someday? The Rock is game

US professional wrestler Dwayne Johnson, best known as "The Rock", is considering entering politics, and maybe even a run for the White House.
US professional wrestler Dwayne Johnson, best known as "The Rock", is considering entering politics, and maybe even a run for the White House. PHOTO: REUTERS

LOS ANGELES • 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 a run for the White House someday.

Johnson, 44, who appears 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, star of The Fast And The Furious franchise.

Asked specifically about a potential White House run, he 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.

 

"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 pro wrestler, Jesse "The Body" Ventura, who served as governor of Minnesota, and bodybuilder-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 takes part in occasional World Wrestling Entertainment matches, alongside producing and starring in HBO's sports dramedy Ballers and the upcoming Baywatch film reboot.

REUTERS


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"The Rock" discusses a future in politics. http://str.sg/4MkZ

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on November 16, 2016, with the headline 'Dwayne Johnson for president someday? The Rock is game'. Print Edition | Subscribe