Fitness Mag Lines Arnold's Pockets

Gina Agular, 29, right, Coral Perez, left, and an unidentified colleague apply some make-up prior to a photo session in Mexico City, Nov. 24, 2010.
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger receives $1 million a year as a consultant to a company that publishes fitness magazines, a deal critics say is a serious conflict of interest for the former bodybuilding champion.

The payments, revealed Wednesday in filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, are from American Media Operations Inc., a subsidiary of American Media Inc., the company that publishes fitness magazines including Flex and Muscle & Fitness and the gossip titles National Enquirer and Star.

Critics say the contract is a conflict of interest because Schwarzenegger's pay comes from advertising revenue and the magazines often feature ads about dietary supplements. The governor last year vetoed a bill that would have imposed government regulations on the dietary supplement industry.

Bill sponsor Sen. Jackie Speier, a Democrat, called on Schwarzenegger to cut all ties with the magazines. "Whether it is an actual conflict or not, it certainly gives the appearance of being a conflict," Speier said.

Independent political observers agreed, saying the contract showed a lapse in judgment by the Republican governor.