Former Trump Aide: Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson Is a Serious Presidential Contender — as a Republican

Former White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney puts Johnson in the same company as Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and Trump himself

Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson
LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA – NOVEMBER 03: Dwayne Johnson attends the World Premiere Of Netflix's "Red Notice" at L.A. LIVE on November 03, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

Mick Mulvaney seems to think the Rock may be cooking a lot more than he’s been letting on.

Mulvaney, President Trump’s chief of staff for over a year in 2019 and 2020, said he thinks Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson would be a serious contender in 2024 — as a Republican primary candidate.

Johnson has publicly flirted with the idea of running for office for years, though has never declared himself for either party. He has ties to Republican campaigns and events in his past, but publicly supported the Biden/Harris ticket in 2022; he’s remained cagey about his affiliation, calling himself a “political independent and centrist” in that endorsement message.

But Mulvaney seemed pretty confident that as a candidate, Johnson would not only break red, but be a serious challenger for both Republican Florida Gove. DeSantis and Trump himself.

“Gov. Ron] DeSantis could give [Trump] a run for his money. [Sen.] Tim Scott [R-SC] can give him a run for his money. Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson could give him a run for his money,” Mulvaney said, handicapping the potential GOP field with Politico in a Wednesday item picked up by Mediaite.

NATIONAL HARBOR, MD – FEBRUARY 28: Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney has a conversation with Stephen Moore (not pictured), Distinguished Visiting Fellow for Project for Economic Growth at The Heritage Foundation, on stage at the Conservative Political Action Conference 2020 (CPAC) hosted by the American Conservative Union on February 28, 2020 in National Harbor, MD. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Mick Mulvaney

Though Johnson’s political ambitions have seemed like just cheeky half-stunts — who could forget the Tom Hanks/Dwayne Johnson announcement for the 2020 ticket on “SNL”? — there have been flashes of serious intent over the years. In 2017, he told GQ that running for the office was “a real possibility.”

“A year ago, it started coming up more and more,” Johnson told GQ, addressing a Washington Post op-ed that suggested he would have been a viable candidate in 2016. “There was a real sense of earnestness, which made me go home and think, ‘Let me really rethink my answer and make sure I am giving an answer that is truthful and also respectful.’”