16 iconic sports figures who should run for President of the United States
Consider these your third-party options
Whether you've already voted, you still need to make it to the polls, or you're exercising your right not to make a choice, Nov. 8 is a big day for everyone. And with all of the nail-biting election coverage and live results ruling our lives, we got to thinking: Which people in this crazy sports universe of ours would we elect if they decided to run?
Now, most of these people are too young to have campaigned for President in 2016 -- and besides, it'd be impossible to get on the ballot at this point, anyway. Yet it's never too soon to start a career in politics. First, you run for school board. Then, you run for city council. After that, it's state legislature, then before you know it, you're on your way to becoming President.
So if any of these 16 sports stars want to lay the groundwork for their future campaign, we'll start making some phone calls.
Richard Sherman, Seattle Seahawks
Politics can be a dirty game. With Sherman, you know the job will get done, no matter what obstacles might (or might not) be in his way. Furthermore, after Monday night's altercation with Rex Ryan, we know the Seahawks cornerback is a skilled debater.
Dale Earnhardt, Jr., auto racing
Earnhardt would easily carry the NASCAR-crazy portion of the country, and he has the crossover appeal to win a national campaign. With his current medical issues, a career change might be in order before too long. Why not run for office?
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Breanna Stewart, Seattle Storm
Stewart has got about 16 years ahead of her before she can run for POTUS, but we're ready to start the campaign tomorrow if she's down. The former UConn Huskies great is arguably the best player in women's college basketball history; her star is only going to shine brighter in the coming years. Plus, she demonstrated this year that she has no fear when it comes to speaking out on controversial issues.
Kris Bryant, Chicago Cubs
Bryant/Rizzo 2020 -- the ticket we all deserve.
Jordan Spieth, PGA
Some people prefer their politicians on the bland side. For those people, we present the most milquetoast golfer on tour.
Getty ImagesJamie Squire
Abby Wambach, USWNT (retired)
No one knows more about proving American supremacy to the rest of the world than a member of the World Cup champion women's soccer team. And now that Wambach is retired, she has plenty of time to pursue her new career in politics. Her recent DUI is a problem on several levels, of course, but it's not the kind of thing that tends to disqualify a person from elected office.
John Cena, WWE
This one's a no-brainer. WWE superstars are practically politicians anyway -- well, sort of. They're more like elected officials who settle policy disputes with suplexes and promos, I guess. But just imagine the State of the Union addresses we'd get from President Cena.
Admittedly, we'd need a Constitutional amendment to allow Papi to run for President. With the way his retirement tour is going, however, it should be pretty easy to find a super-majority of the states who would be in favor of allowing the Dominican-born player to run for our highest elected office. Yankees fans in New York probably wouldn't vote for that amendment, but the rest of the states shouldn't be an issue.
Holly Holm, UFC
Holm is one of the most popular athletes in one of North America's fastest-growing and most popular sports, and her background makes her perfect for public office. "The Preacher's Daughter" would easily win over the spiritual among us.
Zuffa LLC via Getty ImagesJosh Hedges/Zuffa LLC
Peyton Manning, ubiquitous ad spokesman (retired)
With all the Peyton Manning commercials we're used to seeing, would anyone really notice if there were a few additional campaign ads?
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Stephanie McMahon, WWE
McMahon really good at playing the part of a powerful corporate force who gets what she wants on WWE programming, which is perfect; most politicians have a little bit of a Machiavellian streak to them, after all. In fact, we'd be shocked if McMahon didn't follow in her mother's footsteps some day by making her own run for public office.
LeBron James, Cleveland Cavaliers
A year ago, LeBron as President probably wouldn't have made any sense. Since the King brought a title home to Cleveland, however, he's earned the admiration of the entire sports world. LeBron has spoken out in the past on issues he believes are important, and he's also a businessman, which apparently we believe is an important quality for a presidential candidate to have in these globalized times of ours.
NBAE/Getty ImagesAndrew D. Bernstein
J.J. Watt, Houston Texans
There are a number of NFL players we considered for this list, but there's a significant problem. Thanks to rivalries and tense playoff matchups, almost every other high-profile NFL player is hated by at least one segment of the population. But Watt's Texans have never really been a threat to anyone (sorry, J.J.). As a result, the man is beloved around the league. He'd win in a landslide.
Seriously, this is a man whose approach to coaching includes engaging his players in current events, philosophy and the things that really matter in life. He has a military background. He's a tried and true leader. The only reason Pop's not at the top of the list? He probably wouldn't want the job.
The Rock, WWE
Bold prediction: This one is going to happen someday, friends. Dwayne Johnson is a larger-than-life figure who turned one of the greatest wrestling careers into worldwide celebrity, and he sounds genuinely intrigued by the idea. In response to a Washington Post article claiming the Rock could win the presidency, he responded:
"More and more pieces like this are popping up due to the Presidential election and they're cool/fun to read ... I care DEEPLY about our county ... and the idea of one day becoming President to create real positive impact and global change is very alluring," he said in his post. "Buuuuut until that possible day, the most important thing right now is strong honest leadership from our current and future leaders of this country. Thanks again Washington Post."