Arnold Schwarzenegger is back! The former governor returned to the spotlight to make his first public speech since the love child scandal with his former maid and his subsequent split from wife Maria Shriver.
"I'm going to run in 2012," said Schwarzenegger to applause. "I'm going to run for President of the National Bodybuilding Association!"
There was no sign of Shriver at Schwarzenegger's 10-minute speech to the American Chamber of Commerce Executives convention.
The invitation to speak had been extended to Schwarzenegger before the scandal broke. Officials say there was never any discussion about cancelling his appearance.
KCAL-TV political reporter Dave Bryan says he thinks Schwarzenegger chose the friendly crowd to float a political trial balloon.
"I would call it Arnold's toe in the water...I think he's testing the waters coming after the love child stories [and] the breakup of his marriage," Bryan said.
Even some of the women attending the convention say they think Schwarzenegger has been in the doghouse long enough.
"He made an awful mistake and he acknowledged that and you know what, it is what it is," said Tuesdae Knight of the San Antonio Chamber Commerce.
Brynn Rae, also of the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, said, "I think that Governor Schwarzenegger may have made mistakes but I think he's tried to handle it with grace and poise."
The former governor got high marks for his speech, but it was his farewell that got the most applause: "Hasta la vista and I'll be back!"