Tim Tebow is disputing this announcement. See below for his statement.
Football star Tim Tebow will have a speaking slot at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland next week, The New York Times reported. Now Tebow is calling it a “rumor.” Perhaps the most famous open Christian in sports will be addressing the convention likely to nominate Donald Trump.
Tebow has toyed with politics in the past, even hinting to Fox News that he is open to running for political office. His popularity among Republicans led Public Policy Polling to still include him in a poll of favorite quarterbacks, even though he hasn’t played in the NFL for 3 years. He ranked as the fifth most popular QB, and the second most popular among Republicans (16 percent), second only to Peyton Manning (20 percent).
The 28-year-old retired NFL quarterback and winner of the Heisman Trophy, known for his victories with the University of Florida Gators and with the Denver Broncos, is immensely popular, but he hasn’t landed a job in the NFL recently. When Tebow’s representative in Congress, Ander Crenshaw, announced his retirement in April, it seemed the football star might jump in that race. He did not, but this move to speak at the RNC might open the door for it later on.
Twitter went crazy with the news, sending Tim Tebow to the top national trend.
GOP: We have Tim Tebow speaking at the convention.
Dems: Well we have a woman that faked being a Native American as our speaker. Top that.
— Markeece Young (@YoungBLKRepub) July 14, 2016
Some were less than happy.
Others mocked Tebow’s open Christian faith. By the way, Tebow does not use his public prayer to say he is holier than others, but to humbly submit his football performances to God. Jesus was condemning the Pharisees — religious leaders in Israel — with this quote, and Tebow is not lording his faith over others in the way that they did.
Tim Tebow? The Republican National Convention is now the “Dancing with the Stars” of political events. pic.twitter.com/MX5eVMJGTr
— Mrs. Betty Bowers (@BettyBowers) July 14, 2016
This is pretty hilarious.
*Sees Tim Tebow trending in July* “Hmm, wonder who signed him for publicity this time….Oh, the Republicans.” — BigHeadSports (@BigHeadSports) July 14, 2016
Other surprising names? Dana White, president of the Ultimate Fighting Championship, will also speak, as will Pat Smith, mother of a Navy SEAL killed in Benghazi. Professional golfer Natalie Gulbis will also speak.
— CNN Newsroom (@CNNnewsroom) July 14, 2016
UPDATE 9:51 p.m. EST: Tebow posted a Facebook video debunking the “rumor” that he will be speaking at the RNC.
“Hey, everybody! I just got back from the Philippines, and I wake up this morning to find out that I’m speaking at the Republican National Convention. It’s amazing how fast rumors fly,” Tebow said.
Tebow said he thinks he can do the most good through his foundation, rather than through politics. “But I love our country, and I would do anything for America. And one of the things that I love most is that it’s One Nation Under God. You know what that means? It means that you matter,” he said.
Tebow called for Americans to “forget our quarrels and our differences” and unite on the idea that we all matter. Signing off like a true speaker at the Republican National Convention, he concluded, “God bless you, and God bless America!”
Watch the video on the next page!
Posted by Tim Tebow on Thursday, July 14, 2016