FULLERTON, California (CNN) - Ronald Reagan and Arnold Schwarzenegger have both done it. So did astronaut John Glenn and basketball great Bill Bradley. Even Jesse Ventura was able to capitalize on a wrestling career as a way to leap into the political ring.
But what about a tech geek?
Former eBay CEO Meg Whitman wants to move into politics with a run for the job of governor of California in 2010. In doing so, she is, in effect, trying to prove that high-tech personas have become mainstream and trusted enough to take up political office. Although movie stars and astronauts have paved routes from fame to politics, tech moguls largely have not broken into major elected offices.
To make things all the more dramatic, one of Whitman's main opponents, Steve Poizner, is also a Silicon Valley mogul.
Whitman is not the first successful person from the tech world to attempt a leap into politics, but she is perhaps the most well-known, said Mark Z. Barabak, a political writer at the Los Angeles Times. Less famous tech personalities have run for lower offices in California and have had some success, he said.
Editor's Note: PolitiFact.com is a project of the St. Petersburg Times that aims to help you find the truth in politics. Every day, reporters and researchers from the Times examine statements by members of Congress, the president, etc. They research their statements and then rate the accuracy on their Truth-O-Meter.
Barack Obama got many campaign contributions from Goldman Sachs
Liberal filmmaker Michael Moore has a new film coming out - Capitalism: A Love Story - and he appeared on Comedy Central's The Colbert Report to promote it.
The show's ironically conservative host, Stephen Colbert, defended capitalism and the bailouts of late 2008, which led to a mock debate between them.
At first, Wall Street was actually angry about the bailouts, Colbert claimed. "because it might come with strings attached," he explained. "But they forgave Obama when he didn't add any. Now all is forgiven."
"That's why you like Obama so much now?" Moore asked.
"I don't like Obama so much," Colbert said. "On this, I do. And your film is helping me like Obama, because you're a critic of his. You think he's in the pocket of guys like Goldman Sachs."
"I point out in the film that Goldman Sachs is his No. 1 private contributor," Moore answered. "But I voted for the guy. I'm still hopeful that he's going to do the right thing and side with us, and not Wall Street. But the jury's out on that."
We'll let you draw your own conclusions on their debate. We wanted to check Moore's statement about Obama's contributors and the financial services firm Goldman Sachs.
The Truth-O-Meter says: TRUE
WASHINGTON (CNN) – Defense Secretary Robert Gates, who was a prominent member of former President George W. Bush's Cabinet, told CNN that he is enjoying working for Bush's Democratic successor.
In an interview broadcast Sunday on CNN's State of the Union, Gates praised Obama’s approach to decision-making as the nation's commander-in-chief.
"He is very analytical," Gates told CNN Chief National Correspondent John King. "He is very deliberate about the way he goes through things. He wants to understand everything. He delves very deeply into these issues."
Gates, who previously worked for 27 years in the CIA under six presidents, was the first defense secretary to be asked to remain in office by a newly-elected president when Obama kept him on.
The Pentagon chief was diplomatic when comparing Obama to other former occupants of the Oval Office.
"I'm not going to get into comparing the different presidents, Gates said. “I very much enjoy working for this one."
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