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Entertainment Weekly

News

Arnold Schwarzenegger says immigration ban 'makes us look stupid'

Maarten de Boer/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images; Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is the latest high-profile celebrity to strongly criticize Donald Trump’s executive order banning immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries.

“I think the real problem is that it was vetted badly,” the actor told Extra. “If they would run this by the Justice Department and Homeland Security and had the lawyers really study and focus on it and give it some time to do it the right way… I know what he’s trying to accomplish — his fear about people coming in from other places, causing harm to the country. There is another way to going about it to do it the right way and accomplish all of the goals. I think they were hasty with it.”

Schwarzenegger himself is an immigrant who came to the U.S. from his native Austria nearly 50 years ago.

“To go and ban people who have a green card, that means that the United States of America has given you permission to work here permanently and you are on the way to permanent citizenship,” he continued. “I was in that position… It’s crazy, it’s crazy and makes us look stupid when the White House is ill-prepared to put this kind of executive order out there.” (On Sunday, the White House said that green card holders are no longer subject to the ban.)

Schwarzenegger, who like Trump was an entertainment figure who successfully ran for public office, said he understands the difficulties of transitioning to a first-time high-level position in government. “You go in there new, you have a new team and mistakes are made; I hope this is a wake-up call for them,” he said.

This month, The Terminator actor made his debut as host of The New Celebrity Apprentice, taking over the role previously held by Trump. After Trump lambasted the show’s lower ratings on Twitter, Schwarzenegger said he wished the president the best and hoped Trump will work hard for “ALL of the American people.”

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