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Arnold Schwarzenegger: "I'm not running for anything"

March 24, 2009 |  5:08 pm

California's Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has generally declined to discuss his future after term limits end his tensure in the state Capitoln January, 2011.

But today, chatting at The Los Angeles Times, he appeared to declare an end to his political aspirations. For now anCalifornia Republican governor Arnold Schwarzeneggeryway.

Schwarzenegger, a Republican who's been discussed as a potential opponent next year for Democrat U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer said he's “not running for anything.”

And that, he explained, is why he felt “more comfortable” breaking his campaign promise not to raise taxes in the face of a $42 billion budget deficit earlier this year.

Republican state legislators have had their careers threatened for breaking their anti-tax pledges, and Schwarzenegger called them courageous for doing “what’s best for the state.”

“Now I raised taxes, but I’m not running for anything,” Schwarzenegger said. “So I’m more comfortable with it because I’m not running for anything, because I know it’s the right thing. Even though I promised the people of California I’m not going to raise taxes, at the same time I said I’m not going to sign a pledge, because what if there’s an emergency?”

Asked if that meant he had ruled out a race against Boxer, the governor said: "When I say I’m not running for anything, that’s exactly what I mean ….. until you change the Constitution.” Assembly Speaker Karen Bass  of Los Angeles translated: “So he can run for president.”

Being born in Austria, any presidential ambitions for the Terminator are terminated by the U.S. constitution.

-- Michael Rothfeld

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Photo: Associated Press