Rick Harrison has lots of opinions. Conservative opinions. Opinions he’s willing to publicly express despite the risks.
“If you’re a celebrity and you endorse a Republican, it’s sort of like career suicide,” Harrison, the star of the “Pawn Stars” television show, said in a recent interview with The Daily Caller. “But I’m at a point in my life where I don’t care.”
The show about his family business — the Gold & Silver Pawn Shop here on Las Vegas Boulevard — is one of the History channel’s most popular and has made him a lot of money. (Before the TV show, the store saw 100 customers a day; Harrison now estimates 4,000 people walk through his door daily).
“I’ve already been told it’s cost me endorsements,” Harrison said of his political activism. “But the thing is I’m a well-off guy and I care about my kids. You know what I mean? I could quit working tomorrow and I’d be fine for the rest of my life. I want my kids, my grandkids, to have a great life.
His latest journey into the political world includes endorsing Marco Rubio for president. He has already made several trips across the country for the Florida senator and says he will help as much as the campaign wants him too.
“I just agree with so much he has to say,” Harrison said while seated at a conference table in the back of his pawn shop. “He’s a powerful speaker. He knows foreign policy. He wants to bring trade schools back, which I think is a huge deal.”
Harrison said he first met Rubio earlier this year at a small political event in Las Vegas. The two later had breakfast in Los Angeles. He liked what he saw. “It’s a guy I believe genuinely cares,” he said. “I mean, I can read people.”
But what about the argument that Rubio is the Republican version of President Obama — an inspiring speaker but no executive experience?
“I know guys who ran pawn shops for 50 years,” Harrison said. “I wouldn’t pay them 50 cents an hour to work here. Experience isn’t everything.”
PHOTO: Getty Images