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Judge Jesse? TV show in the works

Jesse Ventura may become a judge.

Not a real judge, just a television version of one.

The publication TV Week reports that Ventura is close to signing a deal to host a television court show to debut in a year.

A Twentieth Television spokesman would not talk about negotiations between his company and the former Independence Party Minnesota governor.

However, an official for the Katz Television Group told TV Week that Ventura's history as a navy frogman and a talk-show host "might have the star power to distinguish himself from the welter of court shows."

"Jesse is a bigger-than-life personality, and there is always an advantage of having a brand name like his attached to a show," Carroll told the publication. "That personality could especially work well in the court genre, where he could break through in a crowded field. Needless to say, it would be hard to confuse him with the other judges."

Ventura toyed with running for U.S. Senate, announcing on national television the night before the filing deadline that he would not run unless God told him to before the deadline. He did not file.

He was Minnesota governor from 1999 to 2003, making a name for himself in outlandish comments, working as commentator on a failed football league and refereeing professional wrestling matches.

TV Week reports court shows are among the most popular on the tube, with 11 series on the air in first-run syndication. Three new ones are scheduled to debut this fall.

Don Davis
Don Davis has been the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau chief since 2001, covering state government and politics for two dozen newspapers in the state. Don also blogs at Capital Chatter on Areavoices.