10 Celebrities Who Have Run for Political Office — And Won
If the phrase “President Donald Trump” proves anything, it’s that anyone can run for any office and win — you just have to be a star.
Like it or not, that’s the age we live in. It’s not even particularly new. Celebrities have been running in elections for decades. They don’t always win, but plenty do.
It doesn’t much matter what kind of fame you’ve achieved. Trump, after all, became a well-known public figure in the 1980s basically for being a rich a**hole. He would call up gossip-page editors and pretend to be his own publicist (whom he dubbed “John Barron” or “John Miller”) to spread rumors about his sexual prowess, insult his rivals and brag about his wealth. However you feel about him, the man certainly was innovative in chasing fame.
In the early 2000s, Trump rose to reality-TV stardom as host of The Apprentice, where he played himself only turning the “rich a**hole” persona up to 11. He also became a regular on the WWE circuit during the notorious “Attitude Era,” even defeating Vince McMahon in a “Battle of the Billionaires” match. He would go on Howard Stern and insult Rosie O’Donnell and boast that he slept with other men’s wives and girlfriends.
Trump’s fame didn’t require him to accomplish anything you would call distinguished or estimable — like an actor winning an Oscar, or an athlete claiming a world championship, or writer earning a Pulitzer. His renown grew on the opposite end of the prestige spectrum, the trashier side, which makes it all the more stunning that he was able to claim the highest elected office in the country. It’s no wonder that Kid Rock thinks he should be a senator:
— Kid Rock (@KidRock) July 12, 2017
The White House, for centuries, was a place for statesmanship, for honorable discourse among leaders, for the responsible pursuit of national goals (okay, not always). But now a man with no interest in any of those things, merely the acquisition of power and riches, sits in the Oval Office — entirely the result of his celebrity status.
Trump wasn’t the first celebrity to run for office. He’s not even the first to win a presidential election, or even the first former WWE star to get elected somewhere. He’s living proof that in America, you can do anything you want.
As long as you’re famous.