Musicians Kid Rock and Ted Nugent are being rumored as potential candidates to run for a U.S. Senate seat in Michigan on the Republican side in 2018, according to Fox News Insider. Both musicians hail from the Detroit-area of Michigan and would be running against incumbent Democrat Debbie Stabenow. Rock’s name was first raised as a potential candidate, but Nugent’s soon followed.
According to Roll Call, who reported that the possibility of Rock being a candidate to run for Senate was first raised at a recent Michigan Republican Party convention, Stabenow has held the seat since 2000. A term in the Senate lasts for six years, and Stabenow defeated her last challenger, former U.S. Congressman Pete Hoekstra, by over 20 points in 2012, per the Detroit News.
Rock, whose birth name is Robert Ritchie, is known for music that has spanned across multiple genres, including hip hop, rock & roll, and country. A few of his hits include “Bawitdaba,” “Cowboy,” “All Summer Long,” “Born Free,” and the Sheryl Crow duet “Picture.”
In recent years, Rock appears to have become a bit more politically active. In 2012, he supported Republican nominee Mitt Romney and also appeared alongside liberal actor Sean Penn in a “short film” called “Americans.” The theme behind “Americans” was that even if people disagree politically, they can still get along and be friends. After the 2012 election, Rock told Rolling Stone that his political views are “more libertarian,” though he “tend[s] to vote Republican.”
According to Roll Call, Rock initially supported Republican candidate and retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson for president in 2016. However, he later supported President Trump. In a February 2016 interview with Rolling Stone, Rock also expressed support for Trump, saying he was “digging” the then-candidate. Rock has begun selling “pro-Trump merchandise” as well, according to Roll Call.
“Rock — or Ritchie — even started to sell pro-Trump merchandise in his official online store including t-shirts with the phrase ‘God, Guns & Trump’ in red, white and blue-colored text.”
According to Fox News, Michigan Republican press officer Sarah Anderson said that Rock has not yet been approached about the subject. However, Anderson did seem enthused about the possibility of the musician running for a Senate seat.
“I think he would be awesome,” Anderson told Fox News. “I wouldn’t be surprised if there was a movement for him to run, but to my knowledge he has not been asked.”
Per Fox News, Rock and his representatives have not yet responded to rumors of his potential candidacy for Senate. While a potential political run may be something new for Rock, Nugent, his potential competitor for the same seat, has been asked about the subject of entering politics in the past. In a 2016 interview with MLive, when Nugent was asked if he would ever run for office, he said he has “always considered it.”
Nugent, 68, is known for a number of classic rock hits such as “Cat Scratch Fever,” “Stranglehold,” “Free For All,” “Wango Tango,” and “Fred Bear.” He has been a well-known conservative for many years. An avid sportsman, Nugent is especially known for his support of hunting and Second Amendment rights. He is an NRA board member and currently hosts a hunting show on the Outdoor Channel called Spirit of the Wild.
In 2016, though he did not pledge his support to any candidate until the general election, Nugent ultimately supported President Trump. Nugent performed “The Star Spangled Banner” at a Trump Rally in Sterling Heights, Michigan two days before the election was held, according to MLive.
President Trump eventually won the state of Michigan and was the first Republican to do so since George H.W. Bush in 1988. In an interview with the Daily Caller, Nugent appeared to at least leave the door open to a possible Senate run.
“I’m always very interested in making my country and the great state of Michigan great again and there is nothing I wouldn’t do to help in any way I possible can,” Nugent told the Daily Caller.
Nugent relocated to Texas over a decade ago, but still spends much of his time in Michigan, according to the recent MLive interview. Nugent and Rock are friends and have hunted together, per MLive.
What do you think about Kid Rock and Ted Nugent being possible candidates to run for a Senate seat in 2018?
[Featured Image by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images]