“That’s the reality of it. With Trump, he wants to be me,” Schwarzenegger, the former Republican governor of California, told Men’s Health in an interview published Wednesday.
The actor and the commander in chief have repeatedly traded barbs over the years. After Schwarzenegger took over as the face of the formerly Trump-hosted “Celebrity Apprentice,” the president said in a 2017 tweet, “Yes, Arnold Schwarzenegger did a really bad job as Governor of California and even worse on the Apprentice…but at least he tried hard!”
Schwarzenegger, 72, has mocked Trump before, inviting him to compare his tax returns and calling remarks Trump made earlier this year about minority lawmakers “un-American” and “crude.”
Asked if 73-year-old Trump was scared of him, Schwarzenegger told the mag, “I don’t think he fears me.”
“But I remember that in the old days, when we went to the wrestling matches, the way he admired people with bodies, and the way they would jump around in the ring, and to perform physical stunts and stuff like that — he had great admiration for that. And the showmanship — he had great admiration for that,” Schwarzenegger added of the former New York real estate mogul.
“He asked me, ‘How do you do that, with the movies? I mean, it’s so believable.’ He drilled down to specific questions that fascinated him. It was about ‘How do you sell something?’ Like, a scene. ‘How do you go and act out a scene so that I get affected emotionally?’ He was fascinated by that,” he continued.
Schwarzenegger said that he travels around the world, and no matter where he goes, consistently encounters the same thing: “People everywhere, no matter how much they dump on America, no matter how much people laugh at Trump right now all over the world — they want to come to America.”
“Because they know,” said Schwarzenegger, “that one president, one man, cannot change this country.”