In general, I don’t think celebrity endorsements of politicians mean anything. Who cares what Cardi B thinks? No one. But there are a few celebrities, mostly athletes, who are so respected that their opinions might count for something. In the last few days, several iconic athletes have come out for Donald Trump’s re-election.
First, Jack Nicklaus, the greatest golfer ever.
Get out and vote. I did! pic.twitter.com/IfQb3NeSO3
— Jack Nicklaus (@jacknicklaus) October 29, 2020
It is nice to see a figure like Nicklaus braving left-wing hate to say publicly what he thinks.
Then there is Brett Favre. Bart Starr, the great Packers quarterback of the 1960s, was a conservative and endorsed Republican candidates. But Favre is in the moment, and he is a huge hero in an important swing state:
My Vote is for what makes this country great, freedom of speech & religion, 2nd Amnd, hard working tax paying citizens, police & military. In this election, we have freedom of choice, which all should respect. For me & these principles, my Vote is for @RealDonaldTrump. #Vote ☑️🇺🇸
— Brett Favre (@BrettFavre) October 30, 2020
Next my favorite, Bobby Orr. I lived in the Boston area in the early 1970s, when Orr was in his prime. Bobby Orr was the greatest athlete I have ever followed, bar none. He is probably the most respected man in Massachusetts, and Boston’s biggest sports star ever. He has come out for President Trump:
Hall of Fame Bruins defenseman Bobby Orr today endorsed President Trump in an ad in the New Hampshire Union Leader.
Orr, the giant of the Garden, and the greatest defenseman hockey has ever seen, said President Trump is “the kind of teammate I want”, and praised President Trump for delivering results “for all the American people, regardless of race, gender or station in life.”
Orr emphasized his great concern for our country that he has grown to love deeply [Ed: Orr is from Canada], and that a vote for President Trump will keep America moving forward.
Orr’s ad was placed in the Union Leader to reach the thousands of people from Massachusetts who are now living in southern New Hampshire towns that have become bedroom suburbs of Boston. It is a good strategy: if you are from Massachusetts, you remember Bobby Orr fondly. So maybe President Trump can win New Hampshire.
In general, athletes trend conservative, notwithstanding outliers like Colin Kaepernick, because sports are inherently a meritocracy. Let’s hope that these celebrity endorsements of President Trump do some good.