The intersection of sports and politics is back in the news with the announcement by Denver Bronco’s quarterback Tim Tebow that he wouldn’t rule out a future run for public office. And though the NFL season just finished, the political one is just starting to heat up. That’s why it’s fun to speculate about the potential of political endorsements by professional athletes such as Tebow (Gingrich, Santorum or Romney?) or newly born superstar Victor Cruz, the Super Bowl XLVI champions New York Giants’ wide receiver.
Cruz, who grew up in Paterson, New Jersey, is of both African American and Latino descent. He became a sensation during the 2012 NFL season for his stellar performance as well as for the signature celebratory salsa dance he performed after scoring a touchdown. His endorsement could help President Barack Obama secure the support of both African Americans and Latinos, now that he’s officially claimed he deserves reelection.
And though Obama’s numbers remain healthy among these two key voting blocs, an endorsement by Cruz could inspire Hispanic and African American millennials to increase participation in the political process. Cruz embodies Obama’s “no matter where you come from you can make it in America through hard work” message, and his support during political rallies could give the president a necessary boost, now that he gets ready to face a Republican challenger emboldened by a still fragile economy.
But President Obama might already have gained from Super Bowl night thanks to a Chrysler commercial titled “Halftime in America,” in which actor and director Clint Eastwood talks about the recovery of the American auto industry in what critics decry as a shameless plea for an Obama second term. Make sure you watch the spot and participate in the debate by clicking here.
Should Cruz or any other professional athletes endorse political candidates like President Barack Obama? Or should they stay out of politics?
Photo Credit: AJ Guel