Videos by OutKick
ESPN is about to find itself in a very ESPN predicament: Stephen A. Smith, inarguably the biggest name at the network, just tweeted out a link to a politician’s website.
A politician who is running for president as a *gasps* Republican.
On Friday afternoon, Smith tweeted out a link to presidential candidate Chris Christie’s website.
However, Smith made it clear that this wasn’t an endorsement of the former New Jersey governor, who he noted is a friend. Instead, Smith wanted to help Christie get onto the debate stage.
It’s commendable that Smith wants candidates to get the time of day to get on a stage and debate.
It’s a real shame Democrats don’t see it that way…
However, there’s something else that could make this tweet kind of interesting…
How Will ESPN And Its Stance On Politics Land With Stephen A. Smith?
ESPN somewhat famously has a kind-of-sort-of policy about talent making political statements. It has always seemed to be selectively enforced and they can’t seem to decide whether they do or do not want politics in the mix.
OutKick’s own Charly Arnolt — who previously worked at ESPN — talked about this phenomenon in an April appearance on Fox News’ America’s Newsroom.
“ESPN has been very adamant about keeping politics out of their programming, yet you just saw late last month, they did a whole tribute during women’s month for Lia Thomas,” she said. “Therefore it doesn’t exactly seem like they are keeping politics completely out of the mix.”
Stephen A., to his credit, isn’t scared of thinking for himself and exploring different ideas. He ruffled feathers at the network when he had OutKick founder Clay Travis on his podcast.
Smith wasn’t deterred and explained the value of exploring differing viewpoints.
What a novel idea!
We’ll have to wait and see how this is received by the network — perhaps even more so by the folks that work there — because in the past, anything right of “woke to the point of being asinine” has been frowned upon.
Follow on Twitter: @Matt_Reigle