Arnold Schwarzenegger was recently announced as the new ‘boss’ on the US TV show The Apprentice. But, as an Aussie journo discovered last week, you shouldn’t ask Arnie any questions about the man he is replacing, Donald Trump.
Weekend Sunrise presenter Angela Cox declared that Arnie had “walked out” of their interview, implying she had seriously ruffled The Governator’s feathers by asking about The Donald.
But Arnie has been in this game a lot longer than most, and was a total pro throughout.
He simply said, “This is an interview that I only do about fitness and health, not about politics or my relationships” – Cox had already attempted to quiz the former Mr Olympia about revelations of an affair with his housekeeper, which he had avoided – before his Australian representatives said the interview had reached its allotted time, and therefore was over.
There was no dramatic storm out, no temper tantrum. Arnie just got up, smiling, and left.
“The journalist [Cox] was allocated five minutes and we ran over time, so we cut the interview short,” Schwarzenegger’s Australian publicist, Max Markson, told the New York Post. “I think she’s just trying to make a name for herself. She’s new on the show. Her line of questioning was inappropriate.”
You can’t blame Arnie for wanting to steer clear of controversy. He is cultivating an image of the friendly, elder statesman of health and fitness, and discussing Trump – whose athletic prowess extends as far as hamming it up in the WWE ring – is a good way to put a whole bunch of potential supporters’ noses out of joint, whatever his opinion.
However, you can’t really blame Cox for the line of questioning either. Although it may have been made clear to her that the interview was not about politics, Schwarzenegger is one of the Republican Party’s genuine stars, having served two terms as the Governor of California. Furthermore, his ex-wife and the mother of four of his children is Maria Shriver, the neice of John F Kennedy.
So it wasn’t totally out of line to expect maybe Arnie would have an opinion or two on the man who could well be the next Republican (like Arnie) President of the United States (like his kids’ great uncle).