Schwarzenegger quits ‘Celebrity Apprentice’ over show’s Trump ties

News Hour:

Arnold Schwarzenegger said on Friday he will not be back for another season of NBC’s reality show “The Celebrity Apprentice,” blaming U.S. President Donald Trump’s ongoing role as executive producer for low ratings.

Action movie star Schwarzenegger took over as host of “Celebrity Apprentice” last year. His first season, which premiered in January, has been watched by around 4 million to 5 million viewers.

“Everyone – from the celebrities to the crew to the marketing department – was a straight 10, and I would absolutely work with all of them again on a show that doesn’t have this baggage,” Schwarzenegger said in a statement.

The actor’s representative said Schwarzenegger would not be returning for a second season.

NBC, a unit of Comcast Corp (CMCSA.O), did not comment on Schwarzenegger’s decision not to return for another season, or the show’s future. There was no immediate comment from Trump or the White House on Friday.

Schwarzenegger, a Republican who served two terms as California governor but said he did not vote for Trump as president, told British film magazine Empire in an interview published on Friday that he was leaving the show due to Trump’s involvement.

News that Trump will retain an executive producer credit on the show, which usually involves a payment, caused a media furor in December about potential conflicts of interest.

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