“Kid Rock” and “The Rock” Roll for Political Office

Recently, two Rocks ostensibly threw their respective political hats in the ring. Kid Rock, declared a republican, announced his “Kid Rock for US Senate” bid while Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has been “drafted” regarding a political campaign for US President 2020 as an Independent.

Kid Rock

Although void of any pertinent information beyond KidRockforSenate.com and a few slogans such as “Pimp the Nation” on his Senate-bid website, on his Facebook page, Kid Rock said “I have had a ton of emails and texts asking me if this website is real…kidrockforsenate.com. The answer is an absolute YES. Stay tuned, I will have a major announcement in the near future – Kid Rock.”

A Facebook post right before the aforementioned pre-announcement depicted a photograph of Kid Rock with both middle fingers offering a double bird, accompanied by the words “You best bring an army if your dyin’ to try me.” (Grammar is verbatim.)

A Fox News report had the following clarifications as to how Kid Rock rocks and rolls politically and spiritually:

“Rock, an outspoken conservative, endorsed Mitt Romney for president during his 2012 campaign. He told The Guardian in 2015 that he is a Republican on certain issues, but leans toward the middle on others.” Kid Rock said “I am definitely a Republican on fiscal issues and the military, but I lean to the middle on social issues. I am no fan of abortion, but it is not up to a man to tell a woman what to do. As an ordained minister I don’t look forward to marrying gay people, but I’m not opposed to it.”

I went back to relatively recent transpirations involving Kid Rock aka Robert James Ritchie. (Or is it the other way around?) I discovered that Mr. Rock may be an active reserve police officer in the Village of Oakley, Michigan, the affluent enclave whose police force of 148 reserve cops patrol the terrain of approximately 300 residents. You read that correctly. And if your eyebrows rose, we are probably trying to rationalize the intriguing cops:residents ratio.

An odd story in MLive depicted a pay-to-play scheme whereby it appears wealthy folks (celebrities, lawyers, physicians) get to secretly donate lots of money to the village coffers in exchange for a police badge. It reads like fantasy fodder, but its veracity includes litigation in court based on FOIA requests by a skeptical attorney seeking to unearth what is going on with the village people.

Whether police Officer Robert J. Ritchie is fact or fiction, it does appear his political stance is real. I remain curious of the rocker’s conservative philosophies, policies, and centrist views on today’s social issues.

The Rock

Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has been dallying the idea of bidding for the US presidency. Now, “Run the Rock 2020” is smoldering a campaign in that direction. On July 09, 2017, the “Run the Rock 2020” committee filed papers with the Federal Election Committee, “drafting” The Rock’s political career as an Independent. A man in West Virginia is behind the official filing and, purportedly, has no actual ties to his would-be candidate other than launching a grassroots effort to hopefully motivate The Rock to run for office, according to Fox61.com. #MakeAmericaRockAgain is the handle posted via Twitter.

Of parallel nature, The Rock would be another former professional wrestler whose career spun into major movie productions ala Jesse “The Body” Ventura who also catapulted politically, becoming the Governor of Minnesota.

While hosting Saturday Night Live (SNL) in May 2017, The Rock alluded to running for president. Actually, his words about running for the presidency were pretty concise. With Alec Baldwin joining him on-stage, The Rock spoke the words “I’m in!” and then announced his would-be running mate, Tom Hanks, who joined him on stage. “America needs us,” they boasted to applause. It left many wondering Joke or for reals?

A curious line uttered by The Rock provided a glimpse of forethought: “I didn’t think I was qualified at all, but now I worry I am too qualified.”

Since then, it has been a rather dormant prospect, until the July 9, 2017 filing with the FEC. Sounds like the formative bits and pieces are jelling. “More poise, less noise” were the words bandied about during the SNL monologue. It seemed to me like a borderline reality, and a Public Policy Polling expose evaluated the chances of The Rock’s presidency when stacked against a few variables:

We also looked at Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson’s prospects if he were to run for President as a Democrat. 36% of voters see Johnson favorably to 13% with a negative view of him, although 50% of voters have no opinion about him either way. Both Democrats (38/15) and Republicans (31/17) see him positively. Johnson would lead Trump 42/37 in a prospective contest, and wins over 15% of people who supported Trump last fall.”

That completed poll was published on May 16, 2017, days before The Rock and Tom Hanks went on SNL for its May 20, 2017 Live episode. It would appear some clandestine operations are in rolling. At this point, any presidential run seems based on speculation, as Fox News analysts discussed.

Unlike Kid Rock who is believed to be a reserve policeman, The Rock played many cops in various TV and Hollywood productions. After reading his interview with GQ, I got the feeling The Rock has their endorsement for the US presidency.

Frankly, I’d like to see The Rock run for office, just not necessarily the US presidency. I think he is more suited to the office of sheriff somewhere in a metropolis area. Although not a cop and only played one in The Empire State and Walking Tall, The Rock casts a formidable figure.

Much like Shaquille O’Neil did at the Doral Police Department, celebrities sometimes become law enforcement officers. Folks move over and acutely listen to (ahem) super-sized men with guns. Realistically speaking, the size and authority are seemingly more readily accepted by citizens when fame and celebrity status are ingredients.

Although not a political figure, actor and martial arts guru Steven Seagal evinced how some members of the public kicking up their heels seem to forget their woes when “a star” with a sheriff’s star or police badge shows up. Sometimes, people just want to feel…graced by stardom. (Notice the “Reserve Deputy Chief” title granted Steven Seagal.)

Perhaps that is what Kid Rock had in mind when he applied to be a reserve police officer. Between politics and policing, both are closely aligned anyway, especially nowadays.

Stephen Owsinski

Stephen Owsinski is a Senior OpsLens Contributor and retired law enforcement officer whose career included assignments in the Uniformed Patrol Division and Field Training Officer (FTO) unit. He is currently a researcher and writer. Follow Stephen on Twitter @uniformblue.

Join the conversation!

We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, vulgarity, profanity, all caps, or discourteous behavior. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain a courteous and useful public environment where we can engage in reasonable discourse.