John Legere, ex T-Mobile CEO and former Batman, responded to the mob that invaded the Capitol like so many other political and business leaders by calling on President Donald Trump to relinquish power. But he’s still going a step further, considering himself a run for the political office. After successfully negotiating the merger between the company and Sprint, Legere quit his place as CEO and member of the board of T-Mobile, so he could very well look far and broad for his next gig.
Legere’s tenure as T-CEO Mobile’s transformed the company into a “Un-Carrier,” a plan that ended contracts, redesigned mobile services, and a range of freebies and incentives for consumers intended to establish T-Mobile apart from its long-standing rivals AT&T and Verizon. But what would political candidacy—or non-candidacy—be like for Legere?
Well, if it’s something like his Un-Carrier movements, it might be a crap shoot. Legere was snarky and fearless to roast the competition, and his attitude and leather jackets lean more unpresidential (or Cool) than anything else. But considering the last four years we’ve had, at this stage, we’re likely all used to the unorthodox. Tone is less important than trying to dissolve democracy, so the bar is low.
In terms of strategy, common ideas like Medicare-for-all fit perfectly into the logic of Legere’s Un-Carrier programs. A major part of Un-offering Carrier’s was zero-rated data from some music and video streaming platforms so that it would not be counted against the bills of T-Mobile customers. Why don’t you do the same thing about expensive medical expenses?
Of course, this will open up another can of worms. Legere was a public supporter of net neutrality when he was CEO, but he advocated for programs that boasted him. Those zero-rating systems, such as Binge On and T-other Mobile’s advantages, have actively favored the providers that have entered into an arrangement with the company. A safe internet and a powerful Federal Communications Commission might not be at the top of Legere’s objectives. There is no indication how serious Legere is, or whether a run will entail him pretending to be the heightened version of himself that made him T-unofficial Mobile’s mascot, but there is a precedent.
Executives from the broader world of technology, such as former HP CEO Meg Whitman, have made tries to bring a political office, and a businessman who feels he can repair a nation or a state in the same way that quarterly earnings are a common theme in modern US politics. I’m not keeping my fingers crossed for a T-Mobile magenta paint job for the White House, or I’m conducting a keynote press conference, but God it would make a good story.