Dana White, the outspoken UFC President, has received a bit of love from GOP frontrunner and probable next President of the United States, Donald Trump, after endorsing him for the Commander-in-Chief role (and putting on a pretty stellar show at UFC 194 on Saturday night).
White officially endorsed Trump in an interview with TMZ Sports on Dec. 12, and it appears to be a decision grounded in business support that Trump has shown the UFC throughout the years.
When asked about the Trump phenomenon, Dana White had this to say.
“Donald Trump, when we first bought this business, it was banned in most states and wasn’t supported by most athletic commissions and no arenas wanted this thing, and Donald Trump was the first one to have us come out at the Trump Taj Mahal. Not only did we host the events there, he actually showed up and supported the events. You will never hear me say a negative thing about Donald Trump. You know what. When we did our big Fox deal, there was a big write-up in the New York Times. On the front page, he wrote, ‘Congratulations, Dana, I always knew you were gonna do it,’ and sent the front page to me. So he’s always been… me and Donald are cool.”
When TMZ pressed Dana White on whether that meant he was endorsing him for President, his response was a simple, “Donald will get my vote.”
Since hearing about the endorsement — and likely because celebrity endorsements are so hard to come by for “the Donald” — he made a point of celebrating the kind words with some of his own.
First, on the day of the endorsement, Trump took to Twitter to say this.
Getting the support of @DanaWhite of UFC means a lot. A total winner, who has done an amazing job. Just ordered his fight to watch tonight!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 12, 2015
Later, after a hard-hitting double main event between Conor McGregor and Jose Aldo and Luke Rockhold and Chris Weidman, Trump made sure to tweet more kudos to Dana on a job well done.
.@danawhite Great job last night – very exciting! You have come a long way from those difficult early days, I am proud of you.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 13, 2015
Unpacking the comments of Dana White, it is pretty clear that Donald was referring to the difficulty UFC had becoming a legitimate sport in the eyes of many state athletic commissions.
Even though White and the UFC are firmly on the side of Trump, though, that does not mean the rest of America is. Many hit Trump’s Twitter account upon hearing about the endorsement to say they were “done watching UFC.”
While it may be disappointing for some to hear that White has shifted support to Trump for the 2016 Presidential election, it should probably come as no surprise.
Dana White is known for his take-no-prisoners approach to interviewing. He has not been afraid to go off on media personalities, fighters, and other celebrities, in his tenure at the head of the UFC. (Warning: NSFW)
Likewise, Trump has built his entire campaign for the Presidency on the message that political correctness is “killing the country.”
Recently, on Fox News Sunday, Trump told Chris Wallace that “people are dying” because of political correctness. He also said that Hillary Clinton and President Barack Obama have killed “hundreds of thousands of people with their stupidity.”
These well-known figures are not exactly the types to mince words.
What do you think, readers? Does it matter whom Dana White supports politically? Will you still be watching the UFC?
Sound off in the comments section.
[Image via Dana White Facebook]