‘I think he really — he’s in love with me. That’s the reality of it. With Trump, he wants to be me.’

Arnold Schwarzenegger

That’s Arnold Schwarzenegger, in an interview with Men’s Health, talking about how his relationship with the president has evolved over the years.

“I remember that in the old days, when we went to the wrestling matches, the way he admired people with bodies, and the way they would jump around in the ring, and to perform physical stunts and stuff like that — he had great admiration for that,” the movie star and former governor of California said, adding that Trump was also fascinated with how Schwarzenegger managed to navigate stardom.

But those were happier times for the duo, before Schwarzenegger’s short-lived stint as the replacement host on “The Apprentice.”

Of course, it was Trump’s Twitter finger that started it all:

Schwarzenegger returned fire:

And just this past weekend, Schwarzenegger hit Trump over his rollback of environmental protections, writing in an op-ed for the Washington Post that, “Trump can’t erase a decade of clean-air progress with a Sharpie.”

Clearly, Schwarzenegger, a U.S. citizen since 1983, isn’t shy about discussing the president’s shortcomings. Still, he remains an optimist about the country.

“People everywhere, no matter how much they dump on America, no matter how much people laugh at Trump right now all over the world — they want to come to America,” he explained in the Men’s Health interview. “Because they know that one president, one man, cannot change this country.”

From the MarketWatch archives (2015): Donald Trump’s replacement on ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ is Arnold Schwarzenegger

And (2017): Trump slams Arnold Schwarzenegger’s ‘Apprentice’ departure: ‘He was fired by his bad (pathetic) ratings’

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