U.S. Markets closed

'Not true': Rep for Richard Gere says he has no plans to run for Congress in New York

Suzy Byrne
Editor, Yahoo Entertainment

Celebrities have long crossed over into politics — for instance, Ronald Reagan was elected governor of California more than 50 years ago — and with a former reality TV star running our country right now, it seems the trend isn’t going to stop anytime soon. We currently have Sex and the City‘s Cynthia Nixon making a play for New York governor — and perhaps another movie star, Richard Gere, interested in a congressional run in the Empire State.

There may soon be an open seat in the state’s 18th Congressional District, and there’s chatter that the star of Pretty WomanAn Officer and a Gentleman, and Chicago — who has an estate in Westchester County’s Pound Ridge, as well as a business (the Bedford Post Inn), in that district — is interested in the job. Middletown, N.Y., Mayor Joe DeStefano, whose city falls in that district, told Page Six, “Richard Gere’s name is being whispered about among Democrats. We’ll see what he’s made of.” DeStefano spoke more about it to the local Journal News, saying, “Where [the rumor] started, nobody knows.” He added, “Having high profile people in the race isn’t a bad thing on short notice.”

Richard Gere speaks at the Freedom House 2018 Annual Awards Dinner in May 2018. (Photo: Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images for Freedom House)

The truth is, the open seat is just a hypothetical anyway. Democratic Rep. Sean Maloney, who’s the current representative for New York’s 18th District, is hoping to become the state’s attorney general. He’s one of four seeking the office vacated by Eric Schneiderman, who resigned in disgrace earlier this year. The primary is in September.

So has the 68-year-old Golden Globe winner, who’s played politicians on the big screen (including in 2017’s The Dinner), expressed interest in pursuing a career in politics? Not so much. In fact, not at all. “There’s not even a speck of me that goes, ‘Boy, I’d really want to be a politician,” Gere told CNN last year. “I have no interest. None. Zero.”

While he’s long been an advocate for Tibetan independence and human rights (he’s a Buddhist), he prefers pushing for change as a private citizen. Gere told the news outlet, “It’s really easy speaking from here. I don’t have to compromise with anything. The realm of politics is, every day, every moment, is compromising somehow. I don’t have the patience for it. There’s no way.”

We turned to Gere’s publicist to officially put the gossip to bed. The reports are “not true,” his rep told Yahoo Entertainment.

Besides, in addition to his acting career — he’s currently working in England — there’s something else big coming up for Gere in 2019. He’s reportedly expecting a baby next year with his new bride, Alejandra Silva Gere.

Read more from Yahoo Entertainment: