Gubernatorial Bios Anger Pawlenty and Ventura

ST. PAUL, Minn. – Two former governors for the state of Minnesota have take issue with biographical plaques placed in the state Capitol by the Minnesota Historical Society.

Former Gov. Jesse Ventura has had a quote misattributed to him over the years, and now it’s made it into an official biography displayed in St. Paul. He’s insisting that it be removed, reports KARE 11.

The quote, “Win if you can, lose if you must, but always cheat,” was actually said by professional wrestler Ken Patera according to Ventura.

“That’s Kenny Patera’s. I can tell you exactly who said it. Ken Patera used to say it, not me,” Ventura told KARE 11. “To put that quote in at a building like the Capitol, I think is utterly ridiculous.”

Pawlenty’s objections come from what he perceives to be a political bias against him in the formatting of the biography. Specifically he told KARE 11 he objects to the plaque highlighting the Interstate 35W bridge collapse during his tenure, without mentioning a design flaw dating back to the 1960s which led to the collapse.

The biography also leaves out a number of what Pawlenty views as the key accomplishments of his administration, reports KARE 11. This includes moving Minnesota out of the top 10 most taxed states, the creation of major state parks, and his chairmanship of the National Governor’s Association.

“It’s disappointing, reads like a political commentary in parts, and is not up to the Historical Society’s usual quality standards,” Pawlenty wrote in an email to KARE 11.

In the Historical Society’s changing of their display they have moved from away from brass plaques. As such the new display would be much easier and cheaper to amend, something the society says it plans to do in conjunction with the wishes of both Ventura and Pawlenty.

“We’re more than happy to make amendments or changes going forward,” Historical Society Curator of Art Brian Szott told KARE 11. “Unlike the previous bios, these labels are easily updated.”

Anders Koskinen