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Star sidekicks become part of script in US elections

Nov 2nd, 2012 | By | Category: Latest News, News

IMAGE: Reuters

CLINT Eastwood may have lost some kiwi fans such as Rosemary McLeod, but his now famous chair interview has focused opinion on the role of celebrities endorsing politicians.

After Eastwood’s interview with an empty chair during Republican Mitt Romney’s campaign launch, McLeod’s regular Dominion Post column was titled “The day I lost faith in Eastwood”.

She had placed her faith in “Clint’s dark power to realign the universe”, she wrote.

American commentators are more concerned about his power to sway voters.

Michael Briggs, columnist at The State News, Michigan State University’s independent paper had the following advice for college voters:

“Although the speech Eastwood made was just another delivered by a supporter and not a reason to change your stance either way, there is something we can take from it.

“While movie stars, athletes and artists get the glitz and the glamour for the performances they put on for us, it’s easy to forget that they, too, are just one voice.”

Clint Eastwood was a guest on Ellen DeGeneres’ show which aired in the US on September 18.

He reflected on his address to the chair at the Republican Convention in August .

“It was an interesting reaction, actually. The Democrats who were watching thought I was going senile, and the Republicans knew I was…I was actually just trying to enjoy myself.”

Last year, in an interview with GQ Magazine, Clint Eastwood spoke about gay marriage saying that he didn’t care who wanted to get married to anybody else.

“We’re making a big deal out of things we shouldn’t be making a deal out of…Just give everybody the chance to have the life they want.”

MOVIE MATES: Eastwood with actor Lou Gossett Jr and President Ronald Reagan in 1987. IMAGE: AP Photo

When DeGeneres referred to the GQ interview, Eastwood said it is a libertarian view.

He explained libertarianism by saying: “You’re socially liberal, leave everybody alone, but you believe in fiscal responsibility and you believe in government staying out of your life.”

According to his Wikipedia biography, the actor/director has been a Republican since he voted for Dwight D. Eisenhower in 1952.

He voted for Richard Nixon twice and was disillusioned after the Watergate scandal, he condemned Nixon’s immorality and his handling of the Vietnam War.

Although Eastwood has often played gun-toting vigilante characters, his stance on tougher gun laws and his opposition to US involvement in past and current wars is well known.

He has publicly disapproved of America’s wars in Korea, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq believing that the United States should not play the role of “global policeman.”

In 2007, journalist John Pilger, in a speech titled “The Invisible Government” said that in his lifetime, more wars had been started by liberal democrats that by republicans.

Clint Eastwood voted for Republican candidate John McCain, a veteran of the Vietnam War In the last US election.

“I voted for McCain, not because he was a Republican, but because he had been through war and I thought he might understand the war in Iraq better than somebody who hadn’t.

I didn’t agree with him on a lot of stuff,” said Eastwood.

Of President Barack Obama he says: “I think he’s a nice fella and I enjoyed watching him come along and I enjoyed watching him campaign and win the job.

“But I’m not a fan of what he’s doing at the moment. I just don’t think he’s governing.”



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