On Monday, Fox Sports personality and analyst Skip Bayless said he has inside information that NBA star LeBron James, who frequently wades into politics, is planning to run for President of the United States.
“I’m close with a guy who is very close to LeBron,” Bayless said during an episode of Fox Sports’ “Undisputed,” reported NESN. “And this guy spent a lot of time with LeBron over All-Star weekend in Chicago.”
“And, as soon as Shannon [Sharpe] and I did this topic on Friday, this guy that I’m close to immediately texted me and he said, ‘No no no no, [James] really considering this, and he was way — and it’s got a lot of ‘Y’s’ on the end of ‘way’ — way before [DeMarcus Cousins] came out with it.”
Bayless added: “And, the guy I know said, ‘It’s a plan of his but not yet a goal.’ But he emphasized he’s really — all caps — considering running for president of the United States.”
As noted by NESN earlier in the week, Cousins said during a recent appearance on the “All The Smoke” podcast that he frequently encourages James to run for POTUS.
“I told him the other day … ‘Bro, you need to run for president!’” Cousins said Wednesday on the podcast. “If there’s an NBA player (to become president, it’s) LeBron James.”
“I’m definitely (voting for him),” the basketball player continued. “And he’s going to do it the right way. I mean, obviously that’s just me and my opinion. He probably feels totally different. But I think he can do it. He has that type of impact, influence, and just being a genuine person.”
Responding to Cousins’ remarks, James told reporters Thursday that he is “not considering” a run for president, though he confirmed Cousins frequently encouraging him to run. “He’s said it a few times as the season’s gone on, but no,” James said.
The NBA star has become increasingly political during his time in the league. For example, in September 2017, James ridiculed his home state of Ohio, saying folks there “made a mistake” voting for Trump because they were “uneducated,” The Daily Wire reported at the time.
“No matter whether you voted for him or not, you may have made a mistake and that’s OK, if you voted for him. It’s OK. I’ve done things for my daughter and realized I shouldn’t have gave my daughter that many damn Skittles. Maybe I shouldn’t have done that,” he said.
“At the end of the day, I don’t think a lot of people was educated,” James continued. “And I think that’s one of the biggest problems that we have. When it becomes vote time, people are just not educated on either the individual or what’s going on in the state of the world right now. … I don’t think a lot of people are educated and they make choices and say things that are uneducated.”
James is also a supporter of the controversial national anthem protest in the NFL, sparked by former 49er’s quarterback Colin Kaepernick.
"I'm close with a guy who's very close to LeBron…He texted me and said 'LeBron is really considering running for President of the United States and he was wayyyyy before Boogie came out with it.'"@RealSkipBayless pic.twitter.com/4i4vffYClN
— UNDISPUTED (@undisputed) February 24, 2020