January 6, 2017 11:06 am
Updated: January 6, 2017 11:29 am

Donald Trump mocks Arnold Schwarzenegger’s poor ‘Apprentice’ ratings

Donald Trump (L), Arnold Schwarzenegger (R).

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A mere two weeks before his inauguration, U.S. president-elect Donald Trump is focusing on his former show, The Celebrity Apprentice, and its ratings with its new host, Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Trump posted two tweets early on Friday morning, blasting what he interprets as Schwarzenegger’s ineffectiveness as host. He goes on to call himself a “ratings machine,” and claims that he was a far superior host.

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“Wow, the ratings are in and Arnold Schwarzenegger got ‘swamped’ (or destroyed) by comparison to the ratings machine, DJT,” he wrote. “So much for being a movie star-and that was season 1 compared to season 14. Now compare him to my season 1. But who cares, he supported Kasich & Hillary.”

A few hours later, a measured, calm Schwarzenegger replied to Trump’s tweets, directing him to a quote by former U.S. president Abraham Lincoln from his inauguaration:

The New Celebrity Apprentice premiered on Jan. 2 with Schwarzenegger at the helm, and Entertainment Weekly reports that the new iteration lost nearly half its adult audience (in the 18-49 demo rating) compared to its previous version two years ago. Overall, the show’s viewership dropped 44 per cent from the 2015 debut, when Trump was still host.

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There were some interfering factors on Jan. 2 that may have impacted the show’s performance: it was the day after New Year’s, rival network ABC aired its two-hour premiere of The Bachelor at the same time, and American college football’s Rose Bowl (which was a very exciting game) ended up going over its scheduled running time by an hour, drawing potential viewers away.

Trump is still listed as a producer on the show in the credits, and he hosted Celebrity Apprentice for its 14 previous seasons.

Schwarzenegger took the show in a different direction, and Apprentice moved from New York City to Los Angeles. The former governor and A-list movie star also introduced a new catchphrase when eliminating a contestant (instead of Trump’s “You’re fired!”): “You’re terminated. Get to the chopper.”

WATCH BELOW: Arnold Schwarzenegger debuts Apprentice catchphrase

The eliminated contender then makes their way to an actual helicopter.

Schwarzenegger refused to endorse Trump’s presidential run and declared that he would not vote for him, despite being a Republican since becoming a U.S. citizen in 1983. He encouraged all other Republicans to do the same.

Trump will be inaugurated on Jan. 20 in Washington, D.C., and the next episode of The New Celebrity Apprentice airs on Monday night (on W Network in Canada).

© 2017 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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