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THE RECALL CAMPAIGN | RECALL NOTEBOOK

Schwarzenegger Lists Five Pages of Gifts

August 11, 2003|From Times Staff Reports

Those on the Schwarzenegger family Christmas list may want to be on the lookout for recycled gifts, such as a leather-covered flask, a Giorgio Armani bathrobe or a talking Terminator skull.

Those and other presents showed up in the back of the financial disclosure statement that gubernatorial candidate Arnold Schwarzenegger filed last week with the Los Angeles County registrar-recorder.

State law requires candidates to report all gifts of $50 or more for the year prior to the declaration of their candidacy, and Schwarzenegger has apparently been keeping tabs of various tchotchkes since he received $75 in cologne and soap from the owner of a Marina Del Rey motorcycle shop in July 2002.

While the bulk of Schwarzenegger's financial statement outlines his extensive and sophisticated business dealings, the five-page gift list betrays some of the more intimate perks of mega-celebrity.

In addition to the bathrobe (which came from Armani himself) and the $1,000 talking skull (a gift from "Terminator 3" producers Andy Vajna and Mario Kassar), Schwarzenegger reported a $350 pair of boots from designer Tommy Hilfiger, $250 worth of cigars from motivational speaker Tony Robbins and $150 in Belgian chocolates from Bernie Yuman, identified as the manager of Las Vegas magic and animal act Siegfried & Roy.

Billionaire investor Warren Buffett gave his action-star buddy a $75 coffee-table book last holiday season.

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Huffington Takes On Schwarzenegger, Bush

The Sunday morning talk shows were all over the recall campaign, and no matter who the guests or what the questions the conversations kept circling back to Schwarzenegger.

Arianna Huffington, speaking with George Stephanopoulos on ABC's "This Week," took issue with the suggestion that her views have shifted and used a certain famous foil to make her point:

"Well, first of all, George, I have been speaking about these issues and the control of special interests for years.

"I've written two books about them. I did not pick up this rhetoric on the way to my announcement speech.

"But secondly, Arnold Schwarzenegger, charming though he is, is a Bush Republican. And my campaign is going to connect the dots between the disastrous economic policies of the Bush administration and the plight of California.

"And Arnold Schwarzenegger will not be able to attack Gray Davis for his fiscal irresponsibility while ignoring the orgy of fiscal irresponsibility going on in Washington. It's going to be a very tough argument to make."

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Candidate Counting On Smokers' Wrath

Candidate Ned Roscoe of Napa may be a political outsider, but he has nothing against smoke-filled rooms. His whole platform, in fact, is to protect or restore smokers' rights. (He owns a national discount-cigarette chain.)

"There are about 4 million smokers in California, and if one out of four of them votes to stop getting kicked around," Roscoe said, "I'll be your next governor."

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Former Governor Assesses Campaign

Democrat Jerry Brown, a former governor and now mayor of Oakland, said in an appearance on "CNN's Late Edition with Wolf Blitzer" that few qualifications are necessary for the job.

"Basically, if you have above-average intelligence, you have common sense and you can speak in front of a camera and to a crowd, you can govern the state," Brown said.

"And I think Davis right now, obviously, is the underdog. Schwarzenegger is basically the incumbent. He is on Time and Newsweek. He is the popular man.

"And with all this flurry, you know, he is on top. It's his to lose."

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