Black PR technology did not crush Arnold
Arnold Schwarzenegger has won the gubernatorial election in California. The official results are not known yet, but incumbent (former, to be more precise) Governor Gray Davis has already congratulated the Hollywood actor on his victory. Now California has the new governor, and the new governor has a lot of problems inherited from his predecessor.
As it is well-known, Gray Davis has been recently recalled because of the extremely dissatisfactory situation in the Californian economy. More than 55 percent of electors voted to recall the governor of California – Gray Davis became the second governor in the entire American history to be recalled from office. The last recall victim was North Dakota governor Lynn Frazier – he was recalled 82 years ago in 1921.
It was not easy for Arnold Schwarzenegger to win the election – he had serious competitors. First of all, no one was certain that the Californian electorate would vote to recall their governor. Traditionally, the majority of the state's population vote for democrats. Bill Clinton, Al Gore and actress Barbra Streisand called upon the Californians to support Davis – these are all famous and popular personas. Secondly, Davis's deputy Cruz Bustamante was supposed to be a serious competitor to Schwarzenegger. Bustamante's followers were hoping for the votes from the large Latin American community of California. It was even rumored during the pre-election campaign that Bustamante used to be a member of a terrorist group struggling for California's return to Mexico. The rumor did not help. However, if Cruz Bustamante played the leading role in Terminator and uttered the world-wide known phrase "Hasta la vista, baby" it would have helped him to win.
Schwarzenegger's competitors at the election have failed to use the phenomenon known as the black PR. The Hollywood actor was accused of racism, a Nazis sympathizer (Schwarzenegger is an Austrian by origin and his father used to serve in the Nazi army during WWII), and finally, there was an allegation of sexual harassment. Yet, it turned out to be not enough to ruin the pre-election campaign of the movie hero. Schwarzenegger rejected the accusations of racism and comments about liking Nazis’. Moreover, in 1991 the actor received Simon Wiesenthal Center "Humanity Prize" for his efforts in increasing Holocaust awareness. Finally, the actor decided to apologize to the "victims" of his sexual harassment. It is absolutely not clear where those 15 "harassed" women appeared from and why they have never had any claims before. Black PR technology has not worked well.
In addition, Schwarzenegger's victory was very good for President Bush. The actor defeated democrats, doing a big favor for George W. Bush. Now the US president can be more optimistic about the forthcoming presidential election next year. If a republican actor can win in a democratic state, it means that another republican can do it too, although in the scale of the nation.
Arnold Schwarzenegger has repeated the success of another, less famous actor – Ronald Reagan. Reagan was elected governor of California twice. However, it is too early to say that Schwarzenegger's political career will be as successful as Reagan's