Sports and politics are not connected, that’s a fact. However, in spite of its different paths, some athletes opt to try their luck in politics, thinking that they can do something for the betterment of their countries. Most of these aspirants have gained the trust of the voters – imagine how much traction they have gotten as political candidates because they have brought honor to their countries in their chosen sports.
Athletes who Became Politicians
We have gathered several athletes who became politicians on their respective countries. We will give you an overview so that you will understand what they used to be before they have handled a position in their countries’ politics.
Sport: Professional body builder
Politics: Served two terms as the 38th Governor of California from 2003 until 2011.
Ben Nighthorse Campbell
Sport: Olympian in judo
Three-term U.S. Representative from 1987 to 1993.
U.S. Senator from Colorado from 1993 until 2005.
Politics: U.S. Senator from New Jersey from 1979-1997
Politics: Mayor of Detroit from 2009-2013
Politics: Member of the U.S. House of Representatives 2007-2013
Sports: Gridiron Football
Politics: Housing Secretary in the administration of President George H. W. Bush from 1989 to 1993
Politics: 13th Lieutenant Governor of Oklahoma 1991-1995
J. C. Watts
Politics: Chairman of the House Republican Conference 1999-2003
Sports: Olympian in track
Politics: U.S. House of Representatives from Kansas’ 2nd District from 1996-2007.
Politics: U.S. Representative for New Jersey’s 3rd congressional district from 2011 to 2015.
Liberal Member of Parliament from 2004
Cabinet minister from 2004 to 2006
Politics: Mayor of Sacramento since 2008
Member of the Philippine House of Representatives from the Lone Legislative District of Sarangani 2010-2016
Incumbent Senator of the Philippines (2016)
Federal Deputy from Rio de Janeiro, 2011-2015
Incumbent Federal Senator (2015)
Sports: Track and Field
2008-2012 Chairman of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games
Incumbent – Chairman of the British Olympic Association
Incumbent – President of the International Association of Athletics Federations
Politics: Member of the U.S. House of Representatives from Oklahoma’s 1st district
Politics: 2001-2007 U.S. Representative from Nebraska’s 3rd congressional district, as a Republican.