Mark Cuban thinks the days of the celebrity politician are past. Which is strange, because Mark Cuban is a celebrity who talks a lot about getting into politics.
“What I think voters will sour on by 2020 is the concept that they will trust the skill set of a famous person simply because they are wealthy, famous, or both,” Cuban told Buzzfeed’s Ben Smith on Monday, for a story about the post-Golden Globes buzz around an Oprah presidential run.
Cuban has spoken openly about challenging Trump himself in 2020. “I think that given the circumstances, there’s a unique opportunity for someone like me who’s independent, and not affiliated to a party in any way,” he said in November, according to Fortune.
Cuban, a billionaire, appears to fit precisely the description of the sort of candidate he dismissed in the context of Oprah’s possible run. Cuban is a tech billionaire who, like Trump, appears frequently as a billionaire on TV.
In a later interview with Business Insider, Cuban walked back his critique. “We need far more diversity of thought and experiences in candidates for all offices,” he said, adding it was “great” that Oprah was considering a run.
Josh Nathan-Kazis is a staff writer for the Forward. He covers charities and politics, and writes investigations and longform.
Mark Cuban Dismisses Celebrity Candidates Like Oprah