Watch CBS News

Jesse Ventura says Donald Trump "copied everything" from Minnesota governor campaign for 2016 presidential run

Jesse Ventura says Donald Trump copied his campaign in 2016 run
Jesse Ventura says Donald Trump copied his campaign in 2016 run 02:20

MINNEAPOLIS — This weekend, Minnesota has seen the celebration of all things green — as in marijuana.

Leading the charge was former Gov. Jesse Ventura, who has his own marijuana startup.

Ventura's long legacy also includes one of the most successful third-party candidacies in recent American history.

He still commands the stage, whether it's at the bill signing that made marijuana legal in Minnesota or the announcement of his own marijuana edibles company.

Ventura just released his own brand of cannabis products with Retro Bakery. The edibles are sold under the name Jesse Ventura Farms.

For Ventura, it's personal. He says that medical marijuana was the only thing that helped his wife Terry Ventura's seizures. 

It may have been more than 25 years ago, but Jesse Ventura's 1998 win for governor stands out as one of he most successful third-party runs in U.S. history. Ventura famously said when he won that he shocked the world. 

Among those intrigued by his win was a New York businessman-not-yet-turned-politician. In the winter of 2000, Donald Trump made a pilgrimage to Minnesota to meet with Jesse Ventura to ask him how he had won. Yes, it was Trump who came to pay tribute and learn from the governor.

Jesse Ventura was a guest on WCCO Sunday Morning at 10:30 a.m. 

Jesse Ventura on marijuana in Minnesota and more | Full interview 11:58

"He just studied what we did and his people watched and they copied me to a 'T' when he ran in 2016. Trump copied everything I did in '98, he did it in 2016," Jesse Ventura said. 

Jesse Ventura said recently if he were on the ballot in all 50 states right now, he could beat both President Joe Biden and Trump. That statement has drawn some ridicule, but that doesn't bother Jesse Ventura. He is the first to point out that when he first announced his run for governor people laughed at him, just as they did at Trump when he announced in 2015 he was running for president. 

You can watch WCCO Sunday Morning with Esme Murphy and Adam Del Rosso every Sunday at 6 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.