Arnie sweeps to California victory

Bodybuilder turned Hollywood actor Arnold Schwarzenegger became California’s new governor after ousting incumbent Gray Davis in a historic race.

    Newly minted politician waves at supporters with wife Maria

    The Republican politician declared victory late on Tuesday (in the United States) in the election race dubbed the California Circus.

    Flanked by his wife Maria Shriver, a Democrat of the famed Kennedy clan, Schwarzenegger thanked all of the state’s voters for ushering him into office.

    “I want to help the people of California,” he said. “I came here with absolutely everything. And today California has given me the greatest thing of all, you have given me your trust by voting for me,” he said amid cheers.

    The race made California the first US state to recall its governor since 1921.

    Schwarzenegger vowed to reach across party lines.

    “I will reach out to Republicans, Democrats and independents, to those who supported the recall and those who did not, people of all religions, all colours, and all nationalities. I want to be the governor for the people,” he said.

    Defeat

    Davis (L) concedes  election as his
    mother (R) cries with his wife

    Meanwhile, beleaguered Davis conceded defeat to the action star turned politician, at a packed ballroom in downtown Los Angeles.

    Davis said he had spoken to Schwarzenegger and offered his best wishes to the newly minted politician.

    “We have had a lot of good nights over the last 20 years but tonight the people did decide that it’s time for someone else to serve and I accept their judgment,” said the Democratic leader.

    While Republicans across the most populous state celebrated seeing the unpopular Democratic governor stripped of power, Schwarzenegger needed Democratic support to win.

    Marc O’Hara, consultant for Democrats for Arnold, said he supported the actor “because he’s basically pro-civil rights, pro-choice, pro-environment and pro-small business”.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Interactive: How does your country vote at the UN?

    Explore how your country voted on global issues since 1946, as the world gears up for the 74th UN General Assembly.

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    'We were forced out by the government soldiers'

    We dialled more than 35,000 random phone numbers to paint an accurate picture of displacement across South Sudan.

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Interactive: Plundering Cambodia's forests

    Meet the man on a mission to take down Cambodia's timber tycoons and expose a rampant illegal cross-border trade.