Appearing on The Ellen Show, the topic of a presidential bid was quickly brought up. What started out as an online movement to convince the Hollywood leading man to run for president has continued to pick up steam, becoming more serious as the months have gone on. Some polls have even shown that The Rock would defeat incumbent President Donald Trump in a head to head election.
Ellen DeGeneres asked Johnson, point blank, if he is actually seriously considering running for the office. This came after his Jumanji co-star Kevin Hart spoke about how he would support Johnson if he did become a candidate because a genuine like him can have a serious impact. He mentioned Johnson upsells life on a positive level.
Speaking in a serious tone without a hint of being sarcastic or joking around, Johnson replied to the question by saying, "I am seriously considering it, yes."
There is obvious precedent for an actor go to on to the most powerful office in the world. Ronald Reagan, a former radio broadcaster and Hollywood actor was elected president in 1980 and 1984. Reagan, of course, had first been elected Governor of California prior to his run for the presidency. However, Donald Trump's election in 2016 without any previous political experience or public service has changed the ball game.
We'll have to wait and see if this all ends up being a tease or if Johnson officially announces a bid in the next couple of years. If he goes through with it, one would expect an official announcement within the next year or two. With how early the presidential nominating season campaigns have started in recent years, 2020 candidates should be announcing shortly after the 2018 midterm elections. Early 2019 is a safe bet for when the real contenders will start organizing their campaigns.
Imagine a world where The Rock and Donald Trump face-off in a presidential debate. What would have seemed impossible just a couple years ago seems entirely plausible in today's world. One thing's for sure: it's hard to imagine President Trump being able to use his tough-guy, intimidating persona credibly while standing across the stage from the former ten-time WWE champion.