Terminator turned governor Arnold Schwarzenegger calls Boris Johnson ‘the real deal’

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Schwarzenegger praised Johnson (Picture: Sean Dempsey – WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Actor turned governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has lavished praise on Boris Johnson, saying he is the ‘real deal’.

The former governor of California, 73, also commended the public bicycle hire scheme launched in parts of the UK during Mr Johnson’s tenure as mayor of London, often referred to as ‘Boris bikes’.

Schwarzenegger made the comments during an interview with Alok Sharma as they discussed the MP’s role as the President of Cop26, the international climate change summit due to take place in Glasgow later this year.

The Terminator star said: ‘The reason why I mentioned Boris is because your Prime Minister is, unlike some of the other countries that are host countries of this event, of a Cop event, he is the real deal.

‘And I remember when he was mayor of London, and he started the Boris bikes, and he had me come over to his office, and we rode around on the Boris bikes, you know, to make them popular, and had the press show up and all this stuff and now in the meantime, those Boris bikes are in every city in the world.

‘So it just shows to you how someone’s idea can really spread worldwide. And you know, they have it in Vienna, they have it in Paris, they have it in South Africa, everywhere they have it in Japan, in South Korea I rode the Boris bike. I mean, they are all over the world.

‘So he is really the real deal and he really believes in it and that’s what I love about him, and I think that’s why your conference is going to be successful, because with his backing, and with your knowledge and your passion and all that stuff, I think it’s going to be great.’

Arnold Schwarzenegger praises Boris Johnson as 'the real deal'

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Britain's Prime Minister Boris Johnson speaking at a press conference about the ongoing coronavirus outbreak, in London, Friday, May 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Matt Dunham, Pool)
Arnie commended the Boris bike scheme (Picture: AP Photo/Matt Dunham, Pool)

In 2011 Schwarzenegger and Mr Johnson buried the hatchet as they took to the streets of London to promote the Boris bike scheme. The scheme is currently sponsored by Santander, who follow on from original sponsor Barclays.

The pair had previously been engaged in a war of words, after the actor was caught on a microphone calling Mr Johnson’s 2007 Conservative conference address ‘fumbling’.

In his 2008 conference speech, Mr Johnson retorted that it had been a ‘low moment’ to have his speaking style ‘denounced by a monosyllabic Austrian cyborg’.

But the pair repaired their friendship and have been reunited on various occasions since.

Recently, Arnie said that Caitlyn Jenner has a chance in succeeding Gavin Newsom as governor of California in this year’s recall election.

California  Governors Conference On Women And Families
The actor was formerly the governor of California (Picture: Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images)

The former bodybuilder predicted Jenner – a fellow Republican hoping to challenge the incumbent Democrat – can repeat his triumph, of replacing Gray Davis as the state’s leader in 2003, if she presents a clear vision for California’s future.

During an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Schwarzenegger said ‘anyone has a chance because the people are dissatisfied with what’s going on here in California’.

He added: ‘The key thing about all of this is it doesn’t matter if it’s Caitlyn or anyone else – to have a clear vision of where you want to go, what are the kind of changes you want to make and why are you qualified to become governor.

‘That’s what you have to convince the people, all the other stuff is all nonsense because the press will attack you no matter who you are. They attacked me, but then in the end, I won so that was the main thing.’

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