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The Remaking of Arnold Schwarzenegger
Aired August 12, 2003 - 20:10 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Let's move on to California. Arnold Schwarzenegger has been a movie star, of course, for decades. Now, he faces the biggest challenge of his career turning into a serious candidate and possibly California's governor, sound familiar?
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
RONALD REAGAN, FMR. PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: (Unintelligible) the boys. Ask them to go in there with all they've got, win just one for the Gipper.
Only the point after touchdown but we're going to win.
ARNOLD SCHWARZENEGGER (R), GUBERNATORIAL CANDIDATE: Hasta la vista baby.
I promise you if I get elected to be governor of this great state I will continue on my crusade.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
BLITZER: When Ronald Reagan ran for governor in 1966, one of his first hires was Lyn Nofziger. Nofziger was press secretary for the campaign, stayed on of course through Ronald Reagan's years in the state house then the White House.
Lyn Nofziger is joining us now from Washington where he's a political consultant. Lyn, thanks very much for joining us. What do you make of Arnold Schwarzenegger's chances of becoming the next governor of California?
LYN NOFZIGER, POLITICAL CONSULTANT: Well, if we listen to the media why he's already been elected. Unfortunately, he's got two months to go and during that period he's going to have to tell people where he stands and what he believes and what he can do.
It's not enough just to say that I'm going to go up there and clean house. They're not electing him to be made and it's not enough to say we're going to bring business back to California and we've got to take care of the children. He's going to have to be a lot more specific than that because California has serious problems, as you know.
BLITZER: What does he have to learn from the early mistakes, lessons learned from your former boss Ronald Reagan who made the transition from Hollywood to politics? NOFZIGER: Well, I think he's got to learn how to be a politician instead of an actor which means that he is clearly going to have to go to the people and to look them in the eye and tell them what he's going to do for the state and he's got to be very specific on that. He cannot go there and just talk about stuff. That's not how he's going to win the election.
The thing you want to remember is he's not running against one person. He's running against 200 other people and he's not even running against the incumbent governor.
BLITZER: It's a weird election as all of us know, Lyn, but it's only two months, less than two months, less than 60 days from now. It's a pretty condensed period. He has some liberties, of course, in this kind of short campaign that Ronald Reagan certainly never had.
NOFZIGER: Well, he has some liberties but he also has some problems. Reagan had almost a year to get his point of view across to the Californians and he had somebody specific to run against whereas Schwarzenegger has to condense this into two months.
And, he's got to convince the people of California, the voters of California first of all that Davis should be recalled and, secondly, that he should replace him and that he is the best person to do that.
BLITZER: Very quickly, will he be the next governor?
NOFZIGER: I wouldn't bet on that. I wouldn't bet on anybody at this moment. Yes, there are 200 I'd bet that won't be.
BLITZER: All right.
NOFZIGER: But there are three or four people out there who probably have a shot at this and, while Schwarzenegger is the favorite today, let's wait and see what things are in the middle of September.
BLITZER: Good advice. Lyn Nofziger, thanks very much for joining us.
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