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Ron Paul's counter-convention; Jesse Ventura takes over

September 3, 2008 |  4:44 pm

MINNEAPOLIS -- The crowd cheered at Rep. Ron Paul’s daylong counter-convention in Minneapolis. As many as 12,000 disillusioned Republicans and independents, according to organizers, had showed up at the Target Center, an NBA basketball arena, to cheer for the former Republican presidential candidate who raised so much money and so few delegates.Former wrestler and Minnesota governor Jesse Ventura who suggested there's a conspiracy coverup over 9-11 during a speec at Ron Paul's counter-convention to the Republicans

Paul told the crowd that he was told by Republican National Convention officials that he would need to be chaperoned if he showed up at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.

But who wants to go to a boring old Republican convention that goes on and on for days in St. Paul when you can spend nine eternal hours indoors in Minneapolis listening to a host of conservative and libertarian speakers preach the virtues of the Republican congressman's libertarian-type politics?

But then came former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura. He suggested that there may be a government conspiracy covering up what....

...really happened during the 9/11 attacks.

“Aren’t you innocent in this country until proven guilty?” he said of Osama bin Laden.

Osama bin Laden?

“As distasteful as that is," Ventura said Tuesday, "he deserves the same thing ... Why is he not charged if he did it?”

Wearing a sports coat with a yellow T-shirt underneath, Ventura said the federal government never officially charged Bin Laden after Sept. 11, as they did after the 1998 bombings of the American embassy in Kenya.

“Why did we have a president who stonewalled any investigation of 9/11 for over two years?” he said. “All I’m saying is the truth lies with us. We are the people of the United States of America.”

Which is undeniable!

And means what, no one knows.

But that's why Jesse is called "the Body," not "the Brain." After his speech, the wrestler-cum-politician got a standing ovation when he said he might run for president in 2012.

On the other hand, the usually calm and erudite Ventura, who would never stoop to any political stunts when he ran for and won the Minnesota governor's office, hinted that he might run for president this year. That was good enough to get him on "Larry King Live" for a full hour one night.

But to run, fact is, Jesse would probably have to move back to the United States from his home in Mexico. Bummer. 

-- James Hohmann