- The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Arnold Schwarzenegger said he has some regrets about using the phrase “girlie men” as an insult, telling Men’s Health magazine in a wide-ranging interview that his views have changed in wake of the #MeToo movement.

The former California governor famously used the phrase at the 2004 Republican National Convention, telling a raucous crowd, “Don’t be economic girlie men!”

Mr. Schwarzenegger said Wednesday that “it felt like the right thing to do” at the time, but was shortsighted.

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“It was in my gut. I improvised it,” he said. “I called them girlie men because they weren’t willing to take risks. They were afraid of everything. Politicians in general want to do little things so there’s no risk involved.

“But it was shortsighted,” he added. “In the long term, it’s better to not say that, because you want to work with them.”

The former action movie star also talked about his treatment of women before the #MeToo movement, saying he “stepped over the line several times.”

“Looking back, I stepped over the line several times, and I was the first one to say sorry,” he said. “I feel bad about it, and I apologize.”

Six different women accused Mr. Schwarzenegger of sexual misconduct, including groping, when he was running for governor in 2003. He admitted at the time to behaving “badly” but said many of the allegations against him were untrue.

“When I became governor, I wanted to make sure that no one, including me, ever makes this mistake,” Mr. Schwarzenegger said in the Men’s Health interview. “That’s why we took sexual harassment courses, to have a clear understanding, from a legal point of view and also from a regular-behavior point of view, of what is accepted and what is not.”

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