Linda McMahon, wife of pro wrestling promoter Vince McMahon and CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), officially entered the race for Chris Dodd's U.S. Senate seat from Connecticut. She'll be entering the ring of the Republican primary, hoping to move to the next round of that particular political tournament to compete against Chris Dodd as he attempts to win his sixth Senate term. For someone from a business full of colorful personalities, bombastic attitudes, and interviews hyping up a fight, politics seems like a natural fit for Mrs. McMahon.
If Jesse Ventura could get elected governor of Minnesota, who's to say Linda McMahon can't make it to the Senate? She's been politically active for years, including being appointed to the Connecticut Board of Education earlier this year, as well as spearheading WWE's voter registration campaign. Her appointment to the Board of Education followed debate about her company's often lewd, more often violent programming, despite efforts in recent years to make the product more kid-friendly. She'll also likely push her business experience heading the industry leader in the world's favorite fake sport.
Linda McMahon's also appeared as a pro wrestling character on her company's programming. The Associated Press story on her candidacy noted "One video on the Internet shows her in the ring, appearing to kick a man in the groin." (You can see at least one such video here.)
The opposition researchers are likely drooling at the prospects of an opponent who's led such a public life, with a husband who's been investigated for sexual harassment (no charges were ever filed), went to trial on charges of distributing steroids to his wrestlers (acquitted of all charges), and thinks it's perfectly appropriate to pull down his pants on national television (I'd tell you to look it up, but it's probably best that you don't).
That steroid trial is actually what led to Linda McMahon being named president of WWE in the first place, making it all the more likely that it's going to come up in the campaign. It also came out in the trial that she'd fired the company doctor, Dr. George Zahorian, due to mounting attention from the government on that doctor involving steroids.
The Daily Beast joined in on what's likely to be colorful coverage of the race, asking wrestling personalities for their thoughts on Linda McMahon entering the race. Reactions ranged from that of wrestling manager/booker/everything-else-er Jim Cornette who said "The idea that Vince McMahon could be in the vicinity of one of our lawmaking bodies just frightens me," to '80s and '90s wrestling star "Leaping" Lanny Poffo, who said "Connecticut needs Linda McMahon."
Here's hoping that this race can be about substance and doesn't become as much of a circus as Wrestlemania. Unfortunately, given the way politics works, perhaps a more realistic hope would be that it's at least entertaining.
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