Two Ways to Loathe Giuliani
Speaking of Mark Levin, and Rudy Giuliani, I might as well round out these GOP primary posts with one on America's Mayor himself, courtesy of analysis by the very same Mr. Levin.
Levin, as you might know, is chairman of the Landmark Legal Foundation
, and a prominent right-wing radio talk show host based in New York. Writing on his blog at NRO
, he seeks to puncture the Giuliani balloon:
[W]hen Rudy's early supporters brush aside social or character issues and tell us to only focus on his post 9/11 response or his law enforcement record, they demonstrate a naiveté about the political process and the conservative coalition that may well put Hillary Clinton or another equally troubling Democrat in the White House. Maybe Giuliani will be or should be the Republican nominee, but he will be a sure loser in the general election if his supporters insist that social and economic conservatives ignore his record and past statements.
Sticking points in that record and among those statements include:
- The bogus national security argument: "Does Giuliani bring [more] expertise to the table in waging this war than Romney or even John McCain? I don’t think so." Just because everybody thinks you were great in Manhattan on 9/11 (the facts notwithstanding), doesn't mean you know the first thing about Iraq or Iran.
- Giuliani's claim to be a Reaganite: "That is simply false. He worked in the Reagan administration.... But if he means by Reaganite that he was a Reagan conservative, nobody then or now believes that.... But the view was widely held that Giuliani, as U.S. attorney, was a bit of a loose cannon who was clearly positioning himself to run for mayor." Apparently, this positioning included criticizing Ed Meese, for whom Levin worked. Levin did not appreciate that. So to some degree, this might be personal. Still, there's more.
- Rudy's acknowledgment of the global warming threat and his personal appreciation of Arnold Swarzenegger, which apparently mark Giuliani as a "global warming, big-governent progressive."
- His past support for abortion and gay rights, which "have been every bit as radical as Howard Dean’s – maybe more so." [ooooh, snap! - ed.] Rudy's conversion, Levin argues, has not been entirely convincing.
- Giuliani's refusal to clearly say whether he personally wants to see Roe v. Wade overturned. The bar, apparently, has been raised. Giuliani has already said he'd appoint "strict constructionist judges" who would overturn Roe, which, if you're scoring at home, is all that actually matters, but Levin finds it all a "muddle," and anyway, every Republican candidate promises to appoint "constructionist" judges.
- And finally, this observation:
And while Giuliani’s management of New York City deserves enormous credit, let’s not pretend he didn’t have his share of problems for which he will have to answer when the going gets tough in this election, including some of personnel decisions he made along the way.Bolded for extra deliciousness. Conservatives will not be able to ignore Giuliani's scandals and screw-ups, or the fact that he was deeply unpopular on 9/10/01, or the fact that even his 9/11 performance was not the feat of brilliance the mayor's mythmakers would like us to believe it was.
I'm conflicted about which story blogs should tell about Giuliani in the primary. In part this is because he is the one Republican candidate who, when I imagine him in the White House, terrifies me. He is a terrible, terrible person - politically speaking - and I think a President Giuliani would be disastrous for America. So can I help stop him in the primary by spreading the message of conservative discontent? Or do I stick to pointing out that he's an authoritarian racist with quasi-fascist tendencies - something which no doubt would be attractive
to certain conservatives?Take the City and Run
noted that conflict in my posts about Rudy over at the Daily Gotham. TCR's advice: just stay out of the way, let the Republicans figure it out for themselves, and be ready to hit him if he emerges with the nomination. And that's good advice. But I can't write about conservatives at this blog without observing the two dynamics of Rudy Giuliani. So I've let my slip show in a bit of editorializing here, but for the most part I'll try to stick to reporting what conservatives say about the man, and, from time to time, supplementing that record with the facts.
Labels: 2008, Mark Levin, Presidential election, Rudy Giuliani