After a single disappointing season, rumor has it that Arnold Schwarzenegger could be returning to politics. California circles are apparently “buzzing” with the news that Arnold could be the GOP’s top contender attempting to oust Senator Dianne Feinstein.
“Right now Gov. Schwarzenegger’s focus is on using his platform to bring some sensibility and coherency to Washington by fighting for redistricting reform, like we did in California,” his spokesman told POLITICO.
We obviously know why the Republicans would want a big name like Arnold: Trump has reshaped the landscape of who can be a political candidate. It’s a high time for celebrities with political experience to run for office. This could be the biggest chance for the Republicans to unseat a Democrat with a lot of influence in Washington.
The Heat Street reports:
It also provides “Never Trump” Republicans with a ready-made foil to the President. Schwarzenegger has been openly critical of President Donald Trump, and could go toe-to-toe with the President not just in DC, but for the next 16 months as he prepares to campaign. He’s already publicly criticized Trump’s so-called “Muslim ban” and gotten into a war of words with the former Apprentice host on Twitter.
But what’s in it for Schwarzenegger? The “Governator” quit politics to revive his movie career, but it hasn’t been an exactly glorious comeback. After a few B-level action movies and one short-lived reality television stint, Arnold has become a social media phenomenon, but not much else.
There’s potential for Schwarzenegger to rebuild his national profile as Trump’s top enemy, outside of Hollywood. One Republican strategist even called Schwarzenegger a “silver bullet” in the war against Trump for the GOP’s soul.
Non-Trump Republicans will need a high-profile opposition to keep hope alive that they can ever retake the GOP from Trump’s allies. And California and Utah in 2018 may be just the way to do it – but its clear they’ll have to get through obstacles first.
In Utah, for example, Sen. Orrin Hatch is apparently being pushed by Trump allies to run for one last term. The move likely comes in response to Evan McMullin, the former Independent Presidential candidate and vocal Trump critic, who, GOP strategists speculate, wants Hatch’s seat. His abortive Presidential run got more than 20% of the vote in Utah, and his name recognition there skyrocketed – all priming the pump for a statewide election.