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Tuesday, 6 February, 2001, 07:45 GMT
Arnie ponders political office
Arnold Schwarzenegger and wife Maria Shriver
Arnold Schwarzenegger with wife Maria Shriver
Arnold Schwarzenegger is considering a move into politics and a bid for the governorship of California.

The actor told the LA Times newspaper that he could run for office in 12 months time, following in the footsteps of actor-turned-politician, Ronald Reagan, who began his political career in California.

"I've thought about it many times because I love politics," he said.

The actor has been linked with politics for many years and was last linked to the California governorship in 1999.

Unlike Reagan, who became president in 1980, Schwarzenegger is barred from attaining the highest office in the US because it is only open to those born in the country. The actor was born in Austria.

Schwarzenegger, a long-time Republican supporter, said he would happily give up his successful career in movies.

He said the state was lacking leadership at the moment.

The current governor Gray Davis has come in for criticism following a state-wide electricity crisis.

"I saw in the last 10 years that I'm getting much more pleasure out of (helping people) than making money and making movies," said Schwarzenegger.

'Desire'

He added: "And it's increasing my desire to do that. It can lead, and will lead, probably, to some political office.

"I haven't really said this is the time. But, you know, the bottom line is if Davis goes on the way he is then eventually there will be a vacuum in a year and I could..."

The actor is married to Maria Shriver, a relative of America's most famous political dynasty, the Kennedys.

"But I would sacrifice my, you know, $20m a picture and all those things and forget about that to step in," he said.

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See also:

01 Oct 99 | Entertainment
Schwarzenegger eyes governor job
08 Dec 00 | Entertainment
Arnie battles rain at première
26 Jan 01 | Entertainment
Arnie upheld on 'early death' case
22 Dec 99 | Entertainment
Arnie settles $50m libel case
02 Feb 01 | Americas
California approves power plan
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