Ventura Questions Lama on 'Caddyshack'

Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura had a question for the man millions regard as their spiritual leader and the reincarnation of the Buddha.

He asked the Dalai Lama, who had visited to ask the governor to press China on human rights, if he's ever seen the movie Caddyshack.

"I asked him the most important question, I think, that you could ask him — if he'd ever seen Caddyshack," Ventura said in an interview with WCCO radio.

Ventura says he asked the question in a meeting Wednesday because, in one famous scene, Bill Murray's character tells an improbable story about caddying for the Dalai Lama.

The governor said the man his followers call "His Holiness," responded that he hadn't seen the movie, but laughed at the question.

"He's never seen the film," the St. Paul Pioneer Press quoted Ventura saying. "He knew nothing about it."

Ventura also says the Dalai Lama encouraged him to stick with his plans to make a trade mission to China scheduled for November.

But Ventura says he doesn't plan on raising concerns about China's human rights record in Tibet during that trip.

He says that's a sensitive issue that's better left to national leaders.

But why ask about Caddyshack?

"I only did it because, after meeting with him when I did, he has a great sense of humor," Ventura said, according to the Pioneer Press. "He laughs, and he's a very warm, open person. I just judged that he would get a laugh out of that."

The Associated Press contributed to this report.