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Arnold Schwarzenegger has managed to split the Hollywood lockstep support for the Democratic Party. According to the Guardian (UK), the Governator has convinced Steven Spielberg and Jeffrey Katzenberg to support his Republican re-election to office:
Arnie, it seems, has friends in high places. Some leading Hollywood liberals - the mythic entity said to prowl the hills of Los Angeles dispensing money and influence - are siding with the Republican governor.
While Steven Spielberg and Jeffrey Katzenberg have pledged their support for Mr Schwarzenegger in his bid to be re-elected in November, Democrats are hoping that as long as they can count on Barbra Streisand and Warren Beatty, all may not be lost.
Mr Schwarzenegger has always promised to do away with the partisanship of modern politics. The latest defections from the Democrats suggest he may be succeeding with those of director Spielberg and his DreamWorks studio co-founder, Katzenberg, a significant blow to challenger, Phil Angelides.
The two have long been among the most important, high-profile and generous supporters of Democrat candidates and causes in California and across the US. But in 2004, Spielberg showed he was seduced by Mr Schwarzenegger, donating $100,000 (£52,000) to this political committee. "It starts with a personal relationship. They are friends," a DreamWorks spokesman told the Los Angeles Times.
Conservatives have many problems with Arnold's tenure in California. He tried sticking with a conservative economic program, even calling a special election to get popular support for his efforts. When that failed, Arnold hired a Democratic activist onto his staff and started moving significantly towards the center. In California politics, that is survival, but it hasn't endeared him to the beleaguered Right in the Golden State.
This, however, has worked to strengthen him and to keep California's governorship in Republican hands. Now, with two of Hollywood's most influential power brokers on his side, he has managed to find a fault line between moderates and radicals in Tinseltown. Adding Spielberg and Katzenberg to Jerry Zucker and other movers and shakers shows his power to get serious in an election. In contrast, the Democrats pointed to the celebrity support for Phil Angelides: Barbra Streisand, Warren Beatty, Diane Keaton, Matt Dillon, and Laura Dern.
Well, that may be swell for Angelides, about as dull a candidate as the Democrats could possibly find, but I'd trade all of those and more for a power broker like Steven Spielberg. Those people appear in films; Spielberg makes films. And the important point is the split in the ranks, a good development in any case.Sphere It View blog reactions
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