Runyan signs with Chargers and announces run for Congress

If you thought that Jon Runyan signing with a football team would mean he would not seek to challenge Jon Adler for his Congressional seat, you were wrong according to his statement:

“Yesterday, I received an offer to pursue my professional dream of winning a Super Bowl, and have decided to sign with the San Diego Chargers for the remainder of this season through the playoffs.  Win or lose, these will be my final games as an NFL player,” said Runyan in a statement.  “Last night, I personally informed the Republican County Chairmen in NJ’s 3rd Congressional District that after the season is over I plan to officially retire from football and pursue a campaign for the United States Congress.  I want to thank all of the people who have been encouraging me to run next year and let them know that I look forward to a successful end to my career on the field, and a spirited campaign against Congressman Adler in 2010.”

He’s already met with the GOP chairs and while Burlington County is clearly behind him, George Gilmore and the Ocean County GOP have taken a more wait and see approach. Now he’ll play out the season and then apparently transition from the playing field to the political field.

Comments (3)

  1. ken bank

    From the way he acts and talks I wonder if maybe it wasn’t strapped tight enough when he did play.  Or maybe it was too tight.

    Anyway, I think it is unprecedented, maybe even a violation of League rules, for a professional athlete who is still under contract to run for political office at the same time.  Even if there is precedent it is still highly unusual.  Every athlete I know of who ran for office did so after they formally retired.  I can’t imagine fans in San Diego will be happy wondering if Runyan will be totally focused on winning games or be distracted by campaigning for Congress at the same time.

    On the other side of the coin I’m sure Jon Adler and his supporters will spend the next three months taking shots at Runyan for preferring to play football instead of meeting with voters and familiarizing himself with their concerns.  Especially now that the health care debate is nearing a climax.

    Runyan says he doesn’t like the direction the country is moving in but it seems he’d rather play football than put his time and money where his mouth is.

    It may be said that Nero was playing the fiddle while Rome was burning, and Jon Runyan played football while health care was being debated.

  2. Thurman Hart

    So he’ll be retired by the end of January – what’s the big deal?  Honestly, I’d rather hear something – anything – about what direction he thinks the country should be moving.  Anyone can say things aren’t going right, but if you are going to run for office on that platform, you owe everyone an explanation of what you’d do differently.

    Not that I honestly expect to hear it.  But it would be nice.

  3. Spagnost

    Is it just me or even if Runyan wins would it really matter? I mean I am not sure but I have heard lots of rumors that one of the Democratic Congressmen will lose their districts in the upcoming census results and frankly after the way Adler voted I wouldn’t mind it being him even though I strongly dislike Andrews as well.


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