Author

Jesse Ventura cover

photo credits: Wikimedia Commons

Jesse Ventura

American politician and professional wrestler

1951   -  

country of citizenship: United States of America
languages spoken, written or signed: English
educated at: Roosevelt High School, North Hennepin Community College
occupation: film actor, radio personality, writer, politician, professional wrestler, peace activist, sports commentator
award received: WWE Hall of Fame, Emperor Has No Clothes Award
position held: Governor of Minnesota

Jesse Ventura (born James George Janos; July 15, 1951) is an American politician, actor, television presenter, political commentator, author, retired professional wrestler and former UDT. After achieving fame in the World Wrestling Federation (WWF, now WWE), he served as the 38th governor of Minnesota from 1999 to 2003. He was elected governor with the Reform Party and is the party's only candidate to win a major government office. Ventura was a member of the U.S. Navy Underwater Demolition Team during the Vietnam War. After leaving the military, he embarked on a professional wrestling career from 1975 to 1986, taking the ring name "Jesse 'The Body' Ventura". He had a lengthy tenure in the WWF/WWE as a performer and color commentator and was inducted into the WWE Hall of Fame class of 2004. In addition to wrestling, Ventura pursued an acting career, appearing in films such as Predator and The Running Man (both 1987). Ventura first entered politics in 1991 when he was elected mayor of Brooklyn Park, Minnesota, a position he held until 1995. He was the Reform Party candidate in the 1998 Minnesota gubernatorial election, running a low-budget campaign centered on grassroots events and unusual ads that urged citizens not to "vote for politics as usual". In a major upset, Ventura defeated both the Democratic and Republican nominees. Amid internal fights for control over the party, Ventura left the Reform Party a year after taking office and served the remainder of his governship with the Independence Party of Minnesota. Since holding public office, Ventura has colloquially called himself a "statesman" rather than a politician.As governor, Ventura oversaw reforms of Minnesota's property tax as well as the state's first sales tax rebate. Other initiatives he took included construction of the METRO Blue Line light rail in the Minneapolis–Saint Paul metropolitan area and income tax cuts. Ventura did not run for reelection. After leaving office in 2003, he became a visiting fellow at Harvard University's John F. Kennedy School of Government. He has since hosted a number of television shows and written several books. Ventura remains politically active, having hosted political shows on RT America and Ora TV, and has repeatedly floated the idea of running for president of the United States as a third-party or independent candidate.In late April 2020, Ventura endorsed the Green Party in the 2020 presidential election and showed interest in running for its nomination. He officially joined the Green Party of Minnesota on May 2. On May 7, he confirmed he would not run. The Alaskan division of the Green Party nominated Ventura without his involvement, causing the national party to disown it for abandoning its nominee Howie Hawkins.
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