Former White House spokesman Sean Spicer will approach “Dancing with the Stars” much like he did the challenge of national politics in America’s hyper-partisan environment.
“We may or may not be treating this like a campaign,” Spicer told Kelly Collis and Tommy McFly, the hosts of “The Tommy Show,” a morning broadcast in DC.
“We’ve got people we know on lists of supporters on email that have bought my book or have stayed in touch through my website SeanSpicer.com, where people can sign up,” Spicer explained.
“So that they understand, here’s when the voting opens, here’s the number you call, etc., etc.”
He also looked to radio host Bobby Bones’ season 27 win in November 2018 as inspiration.
Bones’ triumph was considered an upset because the fan favorite was definitely not the most skilled.
“Part of my decision-making was watching Bobby,” Spicer said, admitting that he knows he won’t out-dance the competition, but that doesn’t mean he can’t win the popular vote.
Spicer is an experienced campaign operative who before his short-lived White House post led the communications shop at the Republican National Committee.
Since leaving Team Trump in July 2017, he’s launched two companies, a strategic consulting firm and a political firm.
While Spicer will use his political skills, he doesn’t plan to mimic President Trump’s style by assigning insulting nicknames to the competition, he said.
“I don’t think that would be a smart move for me,” Spicer said. “I don’t need more trouble, I need less.”
In fact, he hopes to set an example that shows that people from opposing political parties can get along.
“Dancing with the Stars” host Tom Bergeron came out Wednesday and said he had been against the idea of “divisive bookings,” arguing to DWTS’ new executive producer that the show be a “joyful respite from our exhausting political climate.”
“I left that lunch convinced we were in agreement,” Bergeron tweeted. “Subsequently (and rather obviously), a decision was made to, as we often say in Hollywood, ‘go in a different direction.’ ”
Spicer said he anticipated that there would be a backlash to his casting. “I didn’t really think it would come from the host,” he said.
“I think the problem right now is the exact opposite of what Tom said,” he continued. “If you just avoid it and sweep it under the rug you do nothing to help the discourse, right?”
He said the cast should serve as an example instead.
“Of how we can have a fun time, have civil and respectful discourse, and actually show people, like, wow, here’s a guy that’s pretty hardcore on the right, getting along with a bunch of guys on the left, having a good time, enjoying themselves, free of politics, enjoying each other, being civil to each other, being respectful to each other, promoting each other,” Spicer said.
Spicer gave a hat-tip to fellow cast member, “Queer Eye” star Karamo Brown, who defended ABC’s casting choice, calling Spicer a “good guy, really sweet guy.”
Spicer said he hopes this will continue and he’ll be able to prove Bergeron wrong.
“My hope is that at the end of the show Tom Bergeron looks back and says wow, we actually helped move the needle a little forward in this country by bringing a bunch of people together from all sorts of backgrounds, political and otherwise,” Spicer said.
“And showing people you can be free from politics, you can have a fun time and really enjoy the company of another person.”
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