TAMPA---In a (semi) surprise appearance, Hollywood star Clint Eastwood took the stage to speak on behalf of Mitt Romney here at the Republican National Convention Thursday night.
Walking in before a gunslinger-silhouetted background, the 82-year-old filmmaker delivered a rambling, teleprompter-less speech that was markedly different than the polished speeches of the politicians that came before him.
"This administration hasn't done enough," Eastwood told 50,000 assembled convention-goers, and millions of Americans watching prime-time TV. "It's time for somebody else to come along and solve the problem."
The long-time Republican and former mayor of his California hometown, Carmel, received several standing ovations during his speech, including when he mentioned the 23 million unemployed in America.
But there were also awkward moments, such as when Eastwood spoke to an empty chair next to him that he pretended was President Obama. "I can't say that to him ... he can't do that to himself," the elderly actor said, implying a swear word that begins with the letter "F." "You're getting as bad as Biden," he joked to the empty chair, in a jab at the gaffe-prone vice president.
Eastwood also told the audience it was time for a "businessman" to take over for a "lawyer," despite the fact that Romney, like Obama, holds a Harvard law degree. The actor first endorsed Romney earlier this year.
"There's so much to be done," said Eastwood as he closed the speech, in a recovery from his earlier foibles. "When somebody doesn't do the job we gotta let him go."
The crowd went wild.