Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, The Hamilton Spectator – Wednesday October 8, 2003
Schwarzenegger admits behaving badly after groping claims
Arnold Schwarzenegger admitted yesterday he had “behaved badly” as he tried to shake off damaging allegations on the eve of California’s race for governor that he used his celebrity to humiliate women sexually.Claims that he was a groper who had sexually humiliated women for three decades were made as the actor set off on a four-day tour aimed an ensuring his victory at the polls on October 7.
After denials by his campaign, the actor acknowledged that he had sometimes “behaved badly” on film sets.
“It is true that I was on rowdy movie sets and I have done things that were not right which I thought then was playful,” he said.
“But now I recognise that I offended people. Those people that I have offended, I want to say to them I am deeply sorry about that and I apologise because that’s not what I’m trying to do.”
The actor said “a lot of the stuff in the story is not true … but I have to say that where there’s smoke there’s fire”. To cheers from a crowd of around 1,500 supporters, he promised to be “champion of women” if elected.
Six women who had met Mr Schwarzenegger on film sets, in studio offices and elsewhere since the 1970s and most recently in 2000 have made the allegations. Two agreed to be named in the report, which was published yesterday by the Los Angeles Times. One of them was the British television presenter, Anna Richardson.
Three women described their dismay when Mr Schwarzenegger allegedly grabbed their breasts. A fourth claimed he had reached under her skirt and gripped her buttocks. Another has alleged he tried to take her swimsuit off in a hotel elevator and a sixth woman said the actor had grabbed her, pulled her on to his lap and asked her “whether a certain sexual act had ever been performed on her”. (Source: The Guardian)