Friday, March 09, 2007

State Of Affairs: Guiliani And The Right

We have covered what may be the first of the political hits on Obama, presented in the last installment of this series. And again, if you haven't read the first post that inspired all of this, you can read it here. In the interest of fairness, we have to look at the GOP side of this issue; because the Dems do not have a lock on dirty tricks committees seeking out allegations of corruption, for political advantage.

Take Rudy Guiliani for instance. GMA did a hit on him and the NY Daily News ran with it, in this article.

Rudy Giuliani's son seems to think his dad would make a better President than he did a father.

"I got my values from my mother," 21-year-old Andrew Giuliani told ABC in an interview quoted on "Good Morning America" yesterday, the same day the Daily News spotlighted the rift between the former mayor and his only son.

He's running, we all know it. But he hasn't formally announced, yet. Therefore, there hasn't been a lot coming out of the Guiliani camp to date from a policy standpoint. But that doesn't stop the ultra-conservative forces from pouncing on him, as he widens his lead in the polls. Because of this early silence, they attack the only negative they can at this moment, his family life.

I have to say that Rudy's personal life is not a model of perfection, or anywhere close to it. I can also say that in the past, he handled his private life, in a very public way, and did it very poorly. I will not side with him on the way he handled it. But likewise, I will not make it an issue because it is not (in any way) relevant to the issues of the day.

But that isn't stopping his critics, both left and right. Both sides are mounting up a charge against a rising Rudy, especially the right wing of the GOP. His pro-gay and abortion rights stances are going to cause him trouble with evangelicals, I would not be surprised if they mount a "morality" campaign against him, before it's all said and done. Some on the far right are even calling for writing in James Dobson for President (note that this blog entry was written in 2005).

A recent poll (which is questionable) conducted by the Gallop Organization shows that Senator John McCain, and former Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani are favored above Hillary Clinton or Senator John Kerry to win the presidency. Well, since all three of these possible presidential candidates have major flaws on issues that I hold dear — I guess I'll write in James Dobson. At least he focuses on the family.

While Giuliani appears to be the most popular of the three — his pro-choice stance is going to alienate the Christian voters causing a "madder" than an ole' wet hen uprising. And Senator McCain can't be trusted to keep his word from day to day. Besides, he might be concentrating more on his movie career these days.

It's still early, but as the GOP field becomes better formed and defined, I believe that the far-right is going to push the family values agenda harder, as they always do. As things get more heated up in the coming weeks and months, the possibility of dirty tactics between the proxy fighters will increase greatly, as well.

The GOP is going to have to look closely at the uphill battle of making a pro-choice candidate viable in the 2008 election. The last thing they want to do, is to create a situation where Christians get angry and stay home "bypassing" voting altogether.

This will be their big threat, Christians staying home on Election Day. If they cannot have their way, they will take their ball and go home. Political blackmail is what I call it. But will it work? I am not so sure. If the far-right decides to play this game, it may find itself with a fractured party. And in turn, it may lead to a Democratic victory.

But more than that, Rudy is already leading in the polls without their support, he may not need it to get the nomination. But the challenge will then be to get enough moderate votes in November, so that not having the evangelical support will be no great loss. That will make it tougher, for sure. But either way, the evangelicals will lose.

If they choose to stay home and Rudy gets elected anyway, they will have no clout with him. He will owe them nothing, therefore, their influence will certainly shrink. If they stay home and a Democrat wins, they will have no pull or any chance of getting it, whatsoever. All in all, the religious right will be forced to go along with the program or face the music.

But until that time, we may see some attacks on Giuliani, both implicit and explicit. Time will tell, just how far they will be willing to go. Going after his family life though, can and will ultimately backfire in the end.


Mary Ellen said...


I'll start off a little off topic and then get back to the topic.

We were discussing the other day about how hypocrite is often used when it doesn't apply. Here is a case where it does apply.

Newt Gingrich, while preaching family values, was having an affair. Not only was he having an affair, but it was during the time that he was preaching morality during the impeachment of President Clinton. That is a hypocrite. How many times did we have to listen to that pig talk about "bringing family values and morality back to the White House"?

I think it will be interesting to see how the Christian right will handle this. They will need a score card between Guiliani and Gingrich to keep track of their marriages, affairs, and divorces. Mitt Romney is looking better to them everyday, I would guess.

I have to say that Rudy's personal life is not a model of perfection, or anywhere close to it. I can also say that in the past, he handled his private life, in a very public way, and did it very poorly. I will not side with him on the way he handled it. But likewise, I will not make it an issue because it is not (in any way) relevant to the issues of the day.

Well, the problem we have here is that it is relevant to the day because the Republicans have made "compassionate conservatism" part of their platform. They made family values their mantra. They seemed to think that Bill Clinton's affair with Monica Lewinski an issue. How can you trust people who claim one thing and don't follow it themselves?

They say gay marriage is wrong and shouldn't be legal because it will hurt the institution of marriage, but they trash the institution of marriage when they can't keep their zippers closed when they are with other women. Hypocrisy at its highest level.

That's why Guiliani's marital affairs and divorces and Gingrich's marital affairs and divorces are relevent, IMO.

Mary Ellen said...

I know this is a little off top (sorry, LA) but I think it bears mentioning.

The Republican party claims they have a lock on homeland security, this is what they like to run on. Guiliani is doing just that with his "I'm the New York 911 hero" routine. Yet, because of Bush and the Republican party, we are hated among those in the world who used to respect us. It doesn't seem that the MSM wants to cover the demonstrations that are following Bush on his trip this week, but this article shows the sharp contrast in how we are perceived now, compared to the Clinton years.

We need another Clinton in the White House. Go Hillary!

the zoom said...

I listened to a speech from a former congressman where he preached how bad the Republicans are in communicating there message to their base and to the public, and how the public does not know anything about what the republicans got done in the 109th congress. And while he was going on about the issues that the Republicans got done, he was also talking about the "earmarks". He explained to the conservative crowd, that "earmarks are les than one tenth of a percent of the federal budget" witch is a stunning fact that makes me wonder why this is the concern of our time in the conservative community.

As he finished his speech, I walked up to him and told him "Mr. Congressman, I might be wrong but I recall reading an article in the Wall St. Journal, about an official in CO criticizing an earmark that Sen. Allard (R-CO) inserted in a spending bill, saying that it takes away the money the State gets from the federal government." So I asked the Hon. Congressman "Is it true that when a congressman or senator inserts an earmark in a spending bill, he does not raise spending? That he just takes away the liberty from one bureaucrat to decide how to spend the money and decides himself where the money should go?"

The answer was yes.

So if earmarks do not raise spending and it's not more then one tenth of one percent of the budget, why is there so much noise about it?

Because we do not communicate, and nobody amongst us is aware of the facts. We have to start communicating, and shouldn't be afraid that someone will slam us, because if you fight back, you have a chance of winning, and if you don’t fight you don’t even have a chance of winning.

Mary Ellen said...


Like I said before, Giuliani's "hero" status is going to begin to be tarnished when all the facts come out. It's his stupid decisions that will hang him every time. Now he is losing the support of one of the biggest Firefighting unions in the US.

The story:

Rudy, firefighters feud

Group, already fuming over Ground Zero curbs,
irate as he skips forum


Rudy Giuliani
Rudy Giuliani never fails to cast firefighters as his heroes, but the nation's largest firefighters union all but declared war on him yesterday after he backed out of a forum for presidential hopefuls.

His withdrawal from the International Association of Fire Fighters forum exposed simmering tensions between the former mayor and city fire unions over his decision in November 2001 to limit FDNY personnel at Ground Zero.

Before Giuliani's decision, hundreds of firefighters were allowed to stay at Ground Zero to dig for remains of their 343 missing comrades, an intensely emotional quest.

But citing safety concerns, Giuliani decided on Nov. 2, 2001, to limit the number of FDNY searchers to 25 - touching off brief but furious scuffles between the NYPD and the FDNY and earning Giuliani the lasting animosity of many city fire officers.

Lingering resentment from that moment were laid bare this week in a letter that was drafted but not sent by city union officials, who were trying to exclude Giuliani, a Republican, from the planned presidential forum in Washington next week.

They failed. Giuliani was invited and agreed Monday to attend, only to say no two days later after the letter began to circulate more widely.

"The disrespect that he exhibited to our 343 fallen FDNY brothers, their families and our New York leadership in the wake of that tragic day has not been forgiven or forgotten," reads the draft.

The letter could ultimately prove damaging to Giuliani, for whom 9/11 remains a defining moment. He has even used firehouses as friendly backdrops for campaign events.

IAFF spokesman Jeff Zack said yesterday that, following Giuliani's decision to back out of the forum, the full letter would be e-mailed to all 280,000 members - representing 85% of the nation's firefighters - with some additional explanation of the dustup.

"The events of November 2001, we think, showed the true character of Rudy Giuliani," Zack said, "and we are going to make sure the firefighters of this country know that story."

Aides of the former mayor said prior commitments - specifically fund-raisers in Houston and New York - had forced him to back out of Wednesday's forum.

"We look forward to future events and an ongoing conversation with America's firefighters," said Tim Brown, who heads Firefighters for Rudy, a campaign offshoot.

The IAFF event is expected to be the first forum to include almost every major candidate from both parties, including Democrats Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and John Edwards, as well as Republican John McCain.

Originally published on March 9, 2007

So, Mr.New York Hero won't be attending a forum that will include Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, and Barack Obama. Nice move. Is this how he'll be running the rest of his campaign?

LASunsett said...


//Newt Gingrich, while preaching family values, was having an affair. Not only was he having an affair, but it was during the time that he was preaching morality during the impeachment of President Clinton.//

For the most part I agree with you on this. But, I would be remiss if I didn't clarify the fact that the charge against Clinton was not for having sex with Monica, but was perjury. Clinton never should have lied. He had the support of the American people, he should have said:

"Yes I did have sex with that woman, it was a mistake. I regret it, now lets move on with the business of running the country."

Had he not lied under oath, there was no there, there. No need to perjure, no nothing in that area. Had he told the truth, I firmly believe the people would have forgiven him and the Starr commission would have had no ammo for impeachment, whatsover.

With all of that said, I agree with your assessment that it was hypocritical of Newt to castigate him for the affair, while his personal life was in similar disarray.

I will add that this is not new knowledge, it was widely known in the DC circles, at that time. I have known about it for a long time. This is one thing that would certainly hurt Newt, if he were to run. I do not think he will run, though. So, it's all moot now.

But if that were to change, we most certainly would hear this brought back up, and to some degree it would be worthy of mention. But I still do not think that a candidate's personal life should be the primary cause for rejecting him/her. I didn't think it to valid then, and I do not think it to so, now.

Mary Ellen said...

If it isn't important what goes on in a politicians private life, why was Bill Clinton being asked about an affair under oath in the first place? It was a consentual affair, she wasn't under age. Bill Clinton was backed into a corner. I agree, it would have been nice if he would have spoken the truth, but had he done so, it wouldn't have mattered. I can't tell you how many times I heard the Republicans crying out that "all Clinton has to do is apologize and we will forgive him". When he did apologize to the American people for lying, they jumped all over his ass and said the apology wasn't good enough. Then they let Ken Starr continue on with more and more bogus investigations.Besides, the American people did forgive Bill, did you see his popularity numbers when he left office? He's still loved all over the world. Did you see the outpouring of concern and love for him when he had heart surgery? The only ones who don't like Bill Clinton are that 30% who can't get over their love affair with the war monger, Bush.

Now, we got a guy, Scooter Libby, who is convicted of perjury and obstruction of justice on four counts. Bill Clinton, BTW, was never convicted of ANY crime. Bill gets impeached, and the right are all screaming for Libby to be pardoned. What's wrong with this picture?

But, back to the point if Newt, the reason this is so hypocritical, in my view, is the fact that Newt is the one who put out the Contract on, I mean Contract For America. He was the one who touted the family values mantra, all the time he was having affairs and lying to the American people. He's a pig.

I still think he's going to jump in the race. The only reason he put this affair thing out there is to test the waters with the Evangelical crowd. I think he is figuring that this will all blow over in a short while and no one will bring it up again. If the Evangelical crowd fawns all over him and tells him he's forgiven, he'll run. He wants this, LA, he can taste it. In fact, I'm willing to lay odds on it.

LASunsett said...


//If it isn't important what goes on in a politicians private life, why was Bill Clinton being asked about an affair under oath in the first place?//

I don't know ME, all I can say is I agree. I don't think it was important then, and I do not think it's important now. Like you said, they were consenting adults.

//I mean Contract For America. //

Well....It's "Contract WITH America", but I knew what you meant. ;)

//He wants this, LA, he can taste it. In fact, I'm willing to lay odds on it.//

Personally, I don't think he will. He may want to so bad he can taste it (as you say), but that doesn't mean he will. But, then again, I have been wrong before and could very well be now.

My best guess is he won't.

Onto the Rudy and NY public safety officers and firemen rift, you mention.

I think that it should come as little surprise that there is a rift, whenever there is a mayor and a union involved.

Mayors represent management, the unions represent the workers. In any union shop, there is a natural enmity and animosity between the parties.

In Indy, we have had a Dem mayor for about 7 years now. The police and firemen's unions hate him. Clinton, Edwards, and Obama have never been mayors or governors. As a Chief Executive in a union shop, you will need to make tough decisons that aren't always popular, due to money concerns.

When I worked for the state, I nwas management. I had an auditor that watched over me. I had uotight bureaucrats that responded to each and every little thing that was going to make them look bad, or was the direct result of a favor that was owed to someone. I had to answer countless BS grievances, nearly every time I would counsel someone for things that they needed do, or cease doing.

With Rudy knowing how these guys felt about him, he did the only smart thing he could have done. Stay away. I would have advised him to do it too. He doesn't need the union vote, he isn't going to get it. He needs to concentrate on the areas that are up for grabs, not the things that are out of reach.

Beside all of this, he still isn't official yet. I say it's good strategy to stay out the limelight right now and let the Dems and maybe the other GOPs get into some spats, and coast while he can do so without spending any money.

LASunsett said...

BTW, welcome to Zoom.

I am not sure what earmarks has to do with Rudy, but feel free to jump in and comment. We try to stay on topic as much as we can. Naturally, the topic evolves a little here and there and that's okay. If you want us to check out something on your blog (on or off topic) you can hyperlink it and you will get hits.

Again, welcome.

A.C. McCloud said...

I admit to thinking Rudy might be the one, but the more that comes out the less wonderful he seems. This is the presidency. Seems like we could get some better candidates.

Newt never had a chance and now that's solidified. Hillary Clinton brings Bill back with her. Been there, done that, no more nightmares, please.

We need a person who has a reasonable chance to bring America together in some fashion necessary to win the WoT, stop rampant illegal immigration, and help save Social Security for our kids.

LASunsett said...


//I admit to thinking Rudy might be the one, but the more that comes out the less wonderful he seems. This is the presidency. Seems like we could get some better candidates.//

I would tend to agree with you on this. But unfortunately, in this game, we have to play the hand that is dealt to us and we cannot fold in order to wait for a better hand.