More than 3½ years after his final "Hasta la vista, baby!" to state government, Arnold Schwarzenegger returned to Sacramento Monday for a victory lap of sorts -- bragging about his efforts to combat climate change and, later, unveiling his official portrait under the Capitol dome.
For a single day in the capital city, it seemed that Schwarzenegger’s legacy was seen as unquestionably good, a change from the recession-weary send-off he received in January 2011.
"I have missed being here, many times," said Schwarzenegger during a Capitol rotunda ceremony to unveil his portrait. "My seven years as governor were the most fulfilling years I ever had in my life."
The Republican ex-governor made a day of it in Sacramento, offering the keynote speech at a climate change summit, boasting of California's efforts in leading the charge on reducing greenhouse gases and promoting renewable energy.
Dozens of former staffers, as well as a who's who of California politics, crowded into the rotunda to watch Schwarzenegger -- flanked by sons Patrick and Christopher -- pull down a velvet drape to reveal what will easily be the largest governor's portrait in the stately old Capitol, standing 75 5/8 inches tall and 53 1/2 inches wide.