sábado, 8 de setembro de 2007

America’s Mayor Goes to America

There are at least half a dozen reasons that a lot of political prognosticators, including many inside his own party, will tell you that Rudolph Giuliani will never be the Republican nominee for president, no matter what the polls say. They are, in no particular order:

Jeff Mermelstein for The New York Times

Rudy Giuliani campaigning in Iowa, Aug. 15, 2007.

Jeff Mermelstein for The New York Times

Rudy Giuliani campaigning in Iowa, Aug. 15, 2007.

1. As New York’s mayor, he was pro-choice, pro-gun control and pro-gay rights.

2. He has demonstrated an odd propensity over the years for publicly dressing up in women’s clothing, proof of which is now readily available online, including a disturbing clip of Donald Trump nuzzling the mayor’s bosom.

3. He once endorsed Mario Cuomo for governor.

4. Once, while mayor, he holed up for months at the apartment of a gay couple who were close friends of his. Try explaining that one at Bob Jones University.

5. He has divorced two times; the last time, he broke the news to his family on national television. His two children don’t seem inclined to vote for him, let alone nominate him for Father of the Year.

6. Presidential politics is said to be largely about warmth and likability, and these aren’t words that leap to mind with Giuliani. His former political ally, Ed Koch, once felt moved to write a book titled “Giuliani: Nasty Man.” It sold well.

And yet here we are, just past Labor Day, when presidential campaigns become tangible affairs, and Rudy Giuliani isn’t showing any signs of fading. In fact, he continues to lead the rest of the Republican field in just about every national poll (followed closely by Fred Thompson and Mitt Romney), taking advantage of a fractious party flailing for direction in the era after George W. Bush. While Giuliani trails Romney in the critical early states of New Hampshire (where Romney, a former Massachusetts governor, is basically a local) and Iowa (where Romney seems willing to spend much of his estimated $250 million fortune to win over every churchgoing farmer in the state, if that’s what it takes), a bevy of polls show Rudy cleaning up in large, delegate-rich states on the coasts. More...

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