Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger may consider himself an environmentalist but he places no hope in the “bogus” Green New Deal.
The 72-year-old actor dismissed the plan championed by Democratic socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and other progressives, while he suggested the rest of the nation should just follow California’s lead on environmental issues.
“What do you make of the Green New Deal?” The Atlantic’s Edward-Isaac Dovere asked Schwarzenegger in an interview published Friday.
“A slogan. Kind of a marketing tool. Something that is very well-intentioned, but, I think, bogus,” the “Terminator” star replied.
“Because that’s what they always do—they call things different names and different people talk about it. But to me, the only thing that really matters is: How do we move forward with our goals?” he said.
“And this means that we stop increasing the amount of greenhouse gases and pollution that we put out there. The idea is to have the whole nation do that and to have the whole world do that, and you don’t have to call them names,” he added. “But I understand also that it makes you feel like there’s a new beginning now because we’re calling it a different name.”
Despite support from several Democrats, the Green New Deal failed in Congress last year and was roundly mocked for its price tag and goals. While many can agree with Schwarzenegger ‘s jab at the unsuccessful climate change package, his advocacy of California’s global warming laws may not prove to be too popular.
“But my point always was that there’s only one deal, and that is the California deal,” he said.
“We in California have shown that it can be done, and we have shown how to do it. And therefore, if the nation really wants to be serious in reducing greenhouse gases by 25 percent like we did, all they have to do is copy us,” he declared. “That’s what states are supposed to do, to be the laboratory for the federal government, and just have the federal government copy very good ideas done by various states.”
Schwarzenegger weighed in on the presidential race and admitted he’s not too impressed with the candidates or the drawn-out “show-business system” of the campaigns.
“It gets boring when you see the same people up there and arguing with each other—and not only arguing with each other but real fake and terrible acting,” he said, apparently referring to the primary debates.
“They should take acting lessons, all of these people up there on the stage,” he continued. “‘Oh, it was appalling that you used to endorse this,’ and ‘How could you have done that? Oh my God, it was horrendous!’ They do this whole drama as if it really affects their life. And then they walk off the stage again and smile and laugh.”
Despite their past friendship, with Schwarzenegger as Trump’s successor on “Celebrity Apprentice,” the two have soured on one another as the actor has repeatedly criticized the president. Yet moving in Hollywood’s liberal circles has apparently not caused the former governor to change political parties.
“A number of Republicans who don’t like Trump and the direction of the party have left. What makes you stay?” Devore asked in the interview.
“Well, I think I’m a true Republican,” he replied.
“If you look at Ronald Reagan or President Nixon or President Lincoln, these were people that were fighting for equality. I’m inclusive. I see myself as that,” Schwarzenegger added. “I see myself as a Ronald Reagan Republican, someone that is very, very good with protecting the economy, but also good at protecting the environment.”
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