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Schwarzenegger skips debate

By Associated Press
© St. Petersburg Times
published September 4, 2003

LONG BEACH, Calif. - Arnold Schwarzenegger was a no-show at the initial debate of California's recall election Wednesday and delivered what was billed as his first major campaign speech, getting pelted with an egg as he waded through a crowd at a college campus.

Unfazed when the egg hit his left shoulder, the action hero peeled off his coat and went ahead with a 15-minute speech in which he asserted that he is running for governor to give something back to a state responsible for his success. He broke no new ground in the address.

"You have such a fantastic life, Arnold, you make millions of dollars to do movies and all those kinds of things, why do you want to do this?" Schwarzenegger asked rhetorically.

"And you know something, because everything that I've gotten - my career, my money, my family - everything that I've gotten and achieved is because of California," he said to cheers at California State University, Long Beach.

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