On Tuesday, Michigan native Terrance Guido Gerin, better known as WWE superstar Rhyno, won the Republican primary for Michigan’s 15th House district seat. While Rhyno was doing a spot with fellow wrestler Heath Slater Tuesday night, on WWE Smackdown Live, voters were casting in their ballots. Gerin found out backstage at the WWE event that he successfully beat the two other Republican candidates (the closest by 56 votes).
Michigan’s 15th district is Rhyno’s hometown of Dearborn, and in an interview with WWE.com, the former ECW Champion explained how he plans to make a difference.
“I think we need to work on infrastructure. The roads in Michigan are poor, and that’s being PC about it. There was a vote to raise the sales tax to 7 percent. I’m not for raising taxes, because it never works out for the middle class. But I think raising the sales tax for two years from 6 percent to 7 percent, getting the roads fixed, getting done with it and making cuts on wasteful spending will [be a big step]. People who are elected to office should definitely be more responsible with tax dollars. Whenever you raise taxes on anyone—middle class, wealthy — it just never works out for the middle class, because it always trickles down to them paying more in one way, shape or form.
I think, let teachers teach. We micromanage them. Here in Michigan, it’s about a decade now that teachers have taken a cut of 11 percent of their pay, and we haven’t seen an increase in pay. We need to get to the basics — reading, writing, arithmetic — and we’ll go from there.”
— Brian Gorie ✖ (@briangorie) July 28, 2016
Clearly Rhyno is not downplaying his role in the WWE while running for the district seat, and his campaign website explains how his professional wrestling career has given him leadership experience.
“Terrance is a 21 year veteran of the wrestling industry. He is a leader in the locker room. His straight edge living and dedication to the sport is what motivates and encourages those around him. During his career he learned leadership skills from Paul Heyman, Dixie Carter, and The McMahon Family.
Wrestling has taken him around the world. Throughout his travels he has beein in 49 of the 50 states and over 20 countries. Most notably for Terrance was in December of 2003 when he traveled with WWE to Iraq, where he met over 10,000 soldiers and wrestled for the troops. Next to the birth of his daughter, this was the greatest and proudest moment of his life.”
— Rhyno (@Rhyno313) July 15, 2016
Rhyno has even incorporated a rhino in his official campaign logo.
The 40-year-old Rhyno will run against the 26-year-old Democrat Abdullah Hammoud on November 8. Hammoud, a healthcare advisor, easily beat out the five other Democrats by attaining 38 percent of the votes. The district seat is currently held by Democratic State Representative George Darany, and Democrats have won the seat in the last two elections.
WWE executives and professional wrestlers are no strangers to politics, and politicians are no strangers to professional wrestling. Donald Trump is a WWE Hall of Fame inductee, and at Wrestlemania 23 he ended up shaving Vince McMahon’s head. “The Governator” Arnold Schwarzenegger is also a WWE Hall of Fame inductee and has appeared many times on WWE programming, including their flagship show WWE Raw. Jesse “The Body” Ventura spent over 20 years in the industry before becoming the Governor of Minnesota in 1998 (under the Reform Party). In 2010, former WWE CEO Linda McMahon, wife to Vince McMahon, unsuccessfully ran as a Republican for a seat in the United States Senate. And the list goes on.
Rhyno found great success in professional wrestling and in the WWE; in November, Terrance Guido Gerin hopes to find similar success in politics by filling Michigan’s 15th House District seat.
[Photo via WWE]