Baltimore Sun

Schwarzenegger takes middle ground on issues

LOS ANGELES - Arnold Schwarzenegger spelled out his views on issues ranging from abortion to taxes in a radio broadcast yesterday, bowing to weeks of criticism that the action star's campaign has been all style and no substance.

Schwarzenegger's comments were his most detailed in his bid to replace Gov. Gray Davis in the Oct. 7 recall election. But he did not give a position on affirmative action or Proposition 54, an initiative on the recall ballot that would ban collection of most racial data by state institutions. He also left open the possibility of raising taxes in an emergency situation.

The Republican said he is in favor of legalizing marijuana for medicinal purposes and protecting a woman's right to abortion but against gay marriage and granting driver's licenses to illegal immigrants.

Schwarzenegger gave his opinions on those and other hot-button issues during a call to the syndicated Sean Hannity radio show, which also was broadcast live on Fox Television.

Some of his responses, including his opposition to gay marriage and support of prayer in public schools, could play well with the state's conservatives. They have been wary of him and have supported state Sen. Tom McClintock, his main challenger among Republicans.