Arnold Schwarzenegger on Autobiography, Affair with Maid

The former Governor discusses his new book that gives a revealing look at his life.
3:00 | 10/01/12

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Transcript for Arnold Schwarzenegger on Autobiography, Affair with Maid
Arnold schwarzenegger here for his first live interview about his autobiography "total recall: My unbelievably true life story." It's on sale now. On body building and business and the movies and politics and the affair with the housekeeper. And the moment he finally confessed to his wife maria shriver. Let's start out with politics now. You're still a republican, right? Yes. But you haven't yet committed to mitt romney. Why? Well, I always wait until the last minute. And there's some very interesting debates coming up. And I think it's always nice when you see both of the candidates next to each other and debate the issues. Is there a chance that you could vote for president obama? I'm open-minded. I want to hear what everyone has to say. And I'm not one that just votes on one issue. I vote on the whole package so which one of the candidates has the best package. Because no one is perfect. No one is exactly what you want. The idea that you can put two candidates together, but that isn't going to happen. So, you know, I keep an open mind. Let's talk about the book a little bit. We asked maria shriver to comment. She's not given one yet. Did she let you know what she thinks about it? Well, I think it's very difficult, you know, obviously, for the family and the kids when this whole thing kind of gets brought back. In what way? Well, the book, the idea at the time just have to write an autobiography for the last 20 years. I always thought there wasn't enough of a story. I didn't have time because I was doing two, three movies a year. But I think after the governorship, you know, i started thinking about it again. And just one of the most incredible immigrant stories. It's extraordinary when you think about coming over here with absolutely no money and making it through the body building sport and becoming the best and winning championships. Then going into movies when everyone thought it would never happen, a leading man in movies with an accent, with a name like that. And not really having any acting background and climb up to be the highest paid actor in the history of motion pictures. And then all of a sudden, there's a recall election in california. And to become governor of the greatest state in the union. This is extraordinary. It certainly is. You write about how the day after you left the governorship, maria confronted you in the therapist's office. But she also confronted you many years before, correct? Yes. I think losing the family, i just can't know how. Do you think you should have? Well, it's easy to be smart in hindsight. But the bottom line is, what it is then over what it is now, it's just one of the sad situations that I've created. And it's the worst thing I've ever done. Worst thing you've ever done? Worst secret? Well, not just the worst secret. It's just it hurt so many people. And the mistakes and the failures that I've had in the past. And I write about all of them in the book. You do. Because I always felt that it should be a book about me, and not just about my successes. Because there's downsides, there's mistakes that I've made in politics, in personal life. In movies and so on. But this is the worst because it affected so many people. It affected so many people. I want to talk about the political effect as well. You know, I was talking to my wife about this, in the book, the part she could not get over, how do you keep mildred in the house knowing all of this? Well, it's worse when you start getting rid of people, it's kind of like punishing somebody for having been in this situation. So that's the best way that i could handle it. I think the important thing now is for, "a," recognize it. And I think that doing the book was really kind of an interesting way of analyzing the life I hate, going back and thinking about the past. Whether it's my childhood or the body building, anything. This book made me look back. And I think analyzing that specific thing was, you know, kind of a -- really, a painful but necessary. Because when you look at the whole thing, it was just so horrible. What it did to the kids and what it did to my wife. Because they were really fantastic. I have the most extraordinary family. Have you been able to repair your relationship with them? You know it takes time. I've had a good relationship with the kids and a very good relationship with maria. But it takes time. And I do everything that I can to work on that, because I want to get them back together. Because I think we were such a terrific family. And just because of my doing, doing this stupid thing, I got into this situation that I'm in. You wrote an extraordinary thing. You say you're optimistic that you and maria will still be together. How can you find that optimism? I'm an optimistic person. I think it's because everyone is interested in that. I'm sure that maria didn't say that. But I'm sure that maria wishes we all could be together. And I definitely all wish we could be together. One final question, have you been able to be a father to joseph, your son with mildred? Yes, and h is my son. And I will take care of him financially. And it's my obligation and I'm doing it. And it seems like you may have learned something from all of this. What would you say your biggest lesson you take away as you look back, and think about writing the book and go over everything in your life? I think that you learn, i don't know how much this helps you, but you learn that one stupid mistake that maybe you think is good at that moment can really destroy a lot of things and can hurt a lot of people. That don't deserve to be hurt like that. And maria did not deserve to be hurt like that, nor do the kids, nor do everyone in the extended family. So everyone has been hurt by that. And that's -- you know, I'm trying to rebuild all of that.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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