During an interview with the Associated Press, former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura hinted that he’s toying with the idea of running as an Independent for the presidency in 2008.
“No party, no nothing,” he told the news service, adding that his campaign message would be, “Elect someone who truly is not controlled by special-interest money. With me, you would get a true check and balance.”
Opinion is divided on whether Ventura is serious. He’s well known for audacious self-promotion and has floated the idea in the past, then nixing it. However, a recent stint as a visiting professor at Harvard University may have changed his mind. Although some insiders laugh at the idea of a President Jesse, former congressman Tim Penny thinks Ventura is serious.
“From what I can gather, I think he’s serious. I don’t think it’s an idle thought,” Penny said. “I don’t discount the governor’s ability to create a significant national following. Arnold Schwarzenegger is governor of California. That shows there’s a lot of voters open to supporting a person who isn’t a career politician.”
At this time, Ventura’s comments have to be considered nothing more than fodder for discussion in political circles. The 2008 elections are not going to be seriously contemplated until after this year. In the meantime, Ventura has given pundits and political junkies something light to talk about during lulls in the conversation. Coincidentally, the waters will be tested for potential supporters. After he’s had time to gauge his backing, Ventura will decide and he’ll be serious. Until then, his statements are just a titillating exercise in self-promotion.
Campanion post at Interested-Participant.