The big question here is what are their real motives? What have they been promised? Hollywood woke up with a shock today: the Los Angeles Times reporting that Democratic loyalists Steven Spielberg, Jeffrey Katzenberg and Haim Saban are supporting Republican incumbent Arnold Schwarzenegger for California governor over the Democratic contender, state Treasurer Phil Angelides. (Interestingly, David Geffen’s name is not included with the other Dreamworks partners, indicating a difference of opinion.) The betrayal of the California Democratic Party in the name of “friendship” was confirmed by Andy Spahn, who was Dreamworks’ longtime politico before he went out on his own: “It started with a personal relationship. They are friends,” he told the LAT. Yeah, sure, and pigs fly. You and I know this must be all about business. Other Hollywood Democrats supporting Schwarzenegger include director Jerry Zucker, movie producer Jonathan Sheinberg, and deep-pocketed TV director and producer Bud Yorkin. I must say, I find this revolt especially revolting. Inexplicable is Saban’s reversal after he spent $200,000 fighting the 2003 recall election that was the basis for Arnold’s power grab, and is one of the Democratic National Committee’s largest donors. For these Hollywood moguls to be able to ignore Schwarzenegger’s broken promises and outright lies as a politician, not to mention his disgusting personal conduct over the years which he helped bury with the collusion of newspaper and magazine publishers, shows a political mindset where expediency obviously trumps integrity. (Just re-read my many columns about Arnold’s misogyny during the recall election, like this one: Arnold’s True Lie.) While I personally thought Steve Westly the better candidate over Angelides, who rivals Gray Davis when it comes to the wimp factor, the Democrat would make a better governor than Schwarzenegger. According to the LAT, Saban donated $22,200 to the GOP governor’s campaign, then, two months later, donated the same amount to Angelides. Five months after that, Saban gave $10,000 to Arnold’s political committee. Now Saban is expected to host a fundraiser for Schwarzenegger in October. Though Katzenberg and Spielberg did not get involved in the recall fight, Spielberg in 2004 donated $100,000 to the governor’s political committee, called the California Recovery Team. One point made by the LAT is that these turncoats could now become fundraising enablers for Schwarzenegger — making it OK for other Hollywood Democrats to give money to Arnold. Really, this is exactly why the GOP keeps winning important elections in California and across the nation: Republicans may not have a clue how to govern, but they do know a lot about maintaining party loyalty and discipline.
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