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Clint Eastwood, citing old age, defends bizarre RNC performance

By Jonathan Terbush
Saturday, September 15, 2012 18:31 EDT
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Clint Eastwood, screengrab via CNN
 
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Hollywood icon Clint Eastwood, who stole the show on the final night of the Republican convention by debating an empty chair meant to signify President Obama, is now defending his performance by saying that in old age, “you don’t have to edit yourself.”

In an interview with CNN, Eastwood said that he had in fact improvised his fake conversation with an invisible Obama. Eastwood did not back down when asked about his decision to deliver such a nontraditional speech, saying instead that it was alright for him to do so because he was old.

“One advantage of being my age is that, you know, what can they do to you?” Eastwood said. “You just have fun and do what you think and you can say what you think, you don’t have to edit yourself.”

Asked if he regretted it at all, the 82 year-old Eastwood simply shook his head, no.

On the Republican convention’s closing night, Eastwood emerged as a surprise speaker in the penultimate slot, immediately preceding Marco Rubio and Mitt Romney. Yet Eastwood’s appearance drew so much attention that it detracted from what was supposed to be the convention’s biggest moment to tout Romney to voters at home.

Eastwood also brushed back criticism that his speech—in which he acted several times as if Obama had told him to shut up or said lewd things to Romney—was offensive, saying that politics is simply a nasty business.

“Nobody wants to sit and insult people, which unfortunately, that’s the way politics is,” Eastwood said. “People are always insulting one another that have different points of views than one another.”

Watch the interview below:

Jonathan Terbush
Jonathan Terbush
Jon Terbush is a Boston-based writer whose work has appeared in Talking Points Memo, Business Insider, the New Haven Register, and elsewhere. He tweets about politics, cats, and baseball via @jonterbush.
 
 
 
 
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