Ventura: No Plans to Run Again, But ...

By: AP
By: AP

MINNEAPOLIS - Minnesota already has a comedian running for Senate. So why not its most famous former pro wrestler? In an interview Monday with The Associated Press, former Reform Party Gov. Jesse Ventura said there's nothing that could get him back into politics. But then he kept talking:

"I've learned after 56 years you never say never. I have no intention at this point in time, but who knows, that could change." He said that he's watching the Senate race with interest, and that "I'm not very pleased with either candidate."

They would be Republican Sen. Norm Coleman, who suffered his only electoral defeat when Ventura beat him for the governorship in 1998, and Al Franken, the former "Saturday Night Live" comedian running as a Democrat.

"I would think we certainly could do a whole lot better in the state of Minnesota," Ventura said.

Ventura has been busy. He called from Boulder, Colo., where he just finished shooting an independent movie, "Woodshop," in which he plays a shop teacher. And the former pro wrestler and one-term governor just wrote "Don't Start the Revolution Without Me!"

The book is constructed as a loose travelogue of his and wife Terry's drive from Minnesota to Baja California, Mexico, where they now spend more than half their time, as Ventura put it, more than an hour from pavement and an hour from electricity.

In the book, Ventura digresses into his obsessions, at one point laying out a scenario in which he ends up running for president, including a campaign kickoff at a Wrestlemania event. He ends up getting shot by a Cuban exile upset over Ventura's opposition to the U.S. trade embargo.

On Monday, he said he just wanted to write about an independent candidate, and chose himself because it's safer. It's not a secret plan to run, he said.

"Am I going to run for president this year? No," he said.

In between talking about leaving the gold standard and the virtues of Mexican property taxes, Ventura declared himself "the most powerful man in America." Why? Because, he said, Republicans and Democrats had to work together to stop him when he was governor.

"I'm the only one that could get them in bed together," he said.


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