Jesse Ventura jumps into the ring for Kerry

By David Talbot
Published October 22, 2004 6:58PM (EDT)

It's official: "The Body" is backing "The Brain."

Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura endorsed John Kerry for president on Friday during a news conference at the State Office Building in St. Paul. True to his maverick, media-stiffing image, the one-time wrestling star did not make any remarks. "Organizers didn't even know Ventura was going to show up until the news conference started," reported KSTP, the ABC television affiliate in the Twin Cities. "He told reporters who followed him out to his car afterward that he'll be doing interviews in Los Angeles."

Ventura has already swayed one voter. Former Maine Gov. Angus King, the only other third-party governor during Ventura's Minnesota reign, also attended the news conference, telling the press that Ventura had talked him into backing Kerry.

Ventura himself apparently underwent a last-minute conversion. "Just days ago," KSTP observed, "Ventura said that he did not plan to support Kerry or President Bush this election year."

David Talbot

David Talbot, the founder of Salon, is the author of New York Times bestsellers like "Brothers," "The Devil's Chessboard," and "Season of the Witch." His most recent book is "Between Heaven and Hell: The Story of My Stroke."

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