Billy King Nearly Ran for Political Office

by September 15, 2010

The Nets’ new GM tells the Star-Ledger a fascinating tale about the time he nearly got into politics: “He doesn’t talk about it much: It entailed a possible return to his hometown of D.C., and originally, it was Jon Corzine’s idea. At that time in 2003, our then-Senator was the head of the Senatorial Campaign Committee and was scouting around for potential candidates for ‘04, so he took the Amtrak from Union Station to Philly, met with King, and gave it a shot: You should consider running for Arlen Specter’s seat next year, Corzine told him. King actually gave it ‘some serious thought,’ he said this morning. The committee told him he’d be staked $3 million,  the rest he would have to raise himself. The latter wouldn’t be much of a problem — it rarely is, when you’re a cog in David Stern’s PR machine. There were only two problems. First, King’s wife didn’t seem particularly enthusiastic about it. Wives are always the sensible ones in moments such as these, but they can eventually be brought around to embracing the insane idea of moving into a fishbowl. Second, ‘I really don’t think Ed Rendell wanted it,’ King explained, and when you don’t have the blessing of the Pennsylvania governor — who had already emerged as a national Democratic leader — your candidacy isn’t going anywhere.”