Trump-Schwarzenegger feud over The Apprentice

Arnold Schwarzenegger (right), who succeeded Mr Donald Trump as host of The Apprentice, which was renamed Celebrity Apprentice, will not return for a second season of the NBC show.
Arnold Schwarzenegger (right), who succeeded Mr Donald Trump as host of The Apprentice, which was renamed Celebrity Apprentice, will not return for a second season of the NBC show. PHOTO: AFP

WASHINGTON • A line from United States President Donald Trump's speech last Tuesday, to the joint session of Congress, came back to haunt him on social media last Saturday morning: "The time for trivial fights is behind us."

Apparently, in Mr Trump's view, long-simmering feuds regarding his old reality show The Apprentice do not qualify as trivial.

Last Friday, Arnold Schwarzenegger, who succeeded Mr Trump as host of the show, which was renamed Celebrity Apprentice, announced that he would not return for a second season of the NBC show. He said he loved working with everyone on the show and would work with them all again "on a show that doesn't have this baggage", later explaining that the "baggage" meant Mr Trump.

"With Mr Trump being involved in the show, people have a bad taste and refuse to participate as a spectator or sponsor or... support the show," he told Empire magazine.

Mr Trump saw it differently.

"Arnold Schwarzenegger isn't voluntarily leaving the Apprentice, he was fired by his bad (pathetic) ratings, not by me," he wrote on his personal Twitter account. "Sad end to great show."

Schwarzenegger responded on Twitter: "You should think about hiring a new joke writer and a fact checker."

These were just the latest in a lengthy back-and-forth between the two.

Last month, the President told an audience to "pray for Arnold, if we can, for those ratings".

Schwarzenegger responded with a video suggesting they change places: "You take over TV because you're such an expert in ratings and I take over your job. And then people can finally sleep comfortably again."

WASHINGTON POST, REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 06, 2017, with the headline 'Trump-Schwarzenegger feud over The Apprentice'. Print Edition | Subscribe