What could be next for James Craig
James Craig's future is suddenly in doubt after his latest effort to get on the August primary ballot failed last week.
Why it matters: Craig's prospects are plentiful thanks to a unique career in law enforcement, leadership and even entertainment.
Yes, but: He hasn't given up on his gubernatorial campaign yet. A spokesperson tells Axios it is "a little premature to discuss the next steps as we are still sorting through what's currently in front of us."
The intrigue: Despite a calamitous run for governor, Craig remains a fascinating candidate as a Black Republican with an extensive law enforcement background and strong local name recognition.
- Axios talked to political insiders about Craig's potential options. Here are some possibilities:
Lower office: Jonathan Kinloch, chair of the 13th Congressional District Democratic Party, says Craig was in line to be Detroit's next mayor before running as a Republican for governor. Many in the city previously thought he was a Democrat.
- "I don't see any pathways for him to garner an elected position in Detroit or Wayne County," says Kinloch, who is also a Wayne County commissioner.
- "Even if Mayor [Mike] Duggan eventually steps aside, Craig's once-possible political career in Detroit is over, but he could likely win a Republican legislative seat should he decide to move," says John Sellek, CEO of Lansing-based PR firm Harbor Strategic.
Media personality: "He's got a pension. He can do whatever he wants," says political strategist Andrea Bitely I'm betting Craig writes a book about his journey in law enforcement and moves to Florida. A book, even if it's bad, will keep him on Fox News."
Law enforcement consultant: While working in Los Angeles, Craig was mentored by William Bratton, the former LAPD chief who parlayed his law enforcement experience into a career as a private consultant.
- Consultancy could be a natural home for Craig — his public safety resume isn't spotless and his run for governor could complicate any immediate interest in being a big city police chief again.
Acting coach: If politics or policing don't work out, Craig could get back into entertainment. His nickname is "Hollywood Craig" for a reason.
- Actor Denzel Washington credited a 1990s ridealong with Craig for preparing him for police roles in "Ricochet" and "The Little Things."
- "When he is playing the LAPD cop, there are things he says he got directly from me," Craig told Fox 2 Detroit last year. "It's almost like he was playing me."
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