Celebrity candidates enter the political arena with one guarantee only: They will be ridiculed.

Ronald Reagan was a B-list actor. Football legend Lynn Swann told the masses not to take voting rights for granted, only to be exposed as someone who often didn’t bother casting a ballot. Jesse Ventura made millions in professional wrestling, a business almost as dirty as politics and nearly as theatrical as reality television shows.

Detractors called Ventura a bad role model based on the way he had hyped his matches. “Win if you can, lose if you must, but always cheat,” Ventura would say. He stole the line not from Donald Trump but from ’50s wrestler Gorgeous George Wagner.

Ringside Seat is an opinion column about people, politics and news. Contact Milan Simonich at msimonich@sfnewmexican.com or 505-986-3080.

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