Speaking to Spin, the bassist/vocalist acknowledges that he had met Donald Trump numerous times before the former Apprentice star ran for the biggest job in world politics, having appeared on the show himself and socialised in some of the same circles.
"I know the previous [US] president," he notes. "I knew him before he entered politics. Look what that gentleman did to this country and the polarization – got all the cockroaches to rise to the top. Once upon a time, you were embarrassed to be publicly racist and out there with conspiracy theories. Now it’s all out in the open because he allowed it."
"We knew each other before [The Apprentice], in clubs and all that," he adds. You have a different responsibility when you’re just a citizen or an entrepreneur. You don’t make policy. It doesn’t affect life and death. When you get into a position of power, it does affect lives. I don’t think he’s a Republican or a Democrat. He’s out for himself, any way you can get there. And in the last election, over 70 million people bought it hook, line and sinker."
Simmons appeared on the first season of the US Celebrity Apprentice alongside fellow celebs such as UFC legend Tito Ortiz, British boxing icon Lennox Lewis, actor Stephen Baldwin and present/journalist/professional loudmouth Piers Morgan, who eventually won the show.
Sadly, Simmons would only make it to week three before being fired by Trump - though he insisted later in an interview with Entertainment Weekly that he'd got fired intentionally as Kiss were due to head out on tour in Australia.
Kiss headline Download 2022 next month as part of their final world tour.
Kiss are on the cover of the new issue of Classic Rock. Paul, Gene, Eric and Tommy are interviewed about almost 50 years of the band and live pyrotechnical mayhem.