November 23, 2002
WHAT'S UP WITH RUDY?:Riding Rudy's Right-Wing Wave: GOP Hero Giuliani Stumps for Himself and America's Party (Wayne Barrett, November 20 - 26, 2002, Village Voice)
The Georgia duo are two of an astonishing list of Giuliani electoral triumphs this year-designed to reposition him to country conservatives as a good old boy as well as a trustworthy ally of the president's, should a vacancy open up on the national ticket. No philosophical difference, including abortion rights, got in the way of an endorsement, forcing NARAL president Kate Michelman to tell the Voice that Giuliani "is clearly putting politics over principle" at a time when "women are faced with the greatest threat to their freedom of choice." By "endorsing anti-choice candidates," Giuliani is "sending a message that it's not important," said Michelman, calling his campaign performance "very disturbing."
In addition to helping replace pro-choice Cleland with Chambliss, who has a perfect voting record on the National Right to Life scorecard, Giuliani did the same in Minnesota, where the stoutly pro-life Norm Coleman will take over Paul Wellstone's seat. In Missouri, he campaigned for another 100 percent House lifer, Jim Talent, who beat pro-choice incumbent Jean Carnahan. The attempt to replace a fourth pro-choice incumbent, Tom Johnson in South Dakota, with John Thune, who has a 94 percent R to L rating, narrowly failed despite Giuliani's endorsement of Thune.
Giuliani also hit the stump for four other new pro-life senators who succeeded outgoing pro-life incumbents-John Sununu in New Hampshire, Liddy Dole in North Carolina, Lindsey Graham in South Carolina, and Lamar Alexander in Tennessee. Finally, he endorsed three pro-life incumbents: Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Wayne Allard of Colorado, who won, and Tim Hutchinson of Arkansas, the only GOP senator to lose. Susan Collins of Maine was the solitary pro-choice senator backed by Giuliani. He also campaigned for a new pro-life congressman in Nevada, Jon Porter, as well as helping to re-elect lifers like Pete Sessions in Texas and Tom Davis in Virginia, on top of his headlining of a March fundraiser in Washington that raised $7.5 million for the House GOP campaign committee.
Giuliani's gubernatorial palmcard across the country included pro-life Bill Simon in California, whose pro-choice primary opponent Richard Riordan was backed by both George Pataki and Mike Bloomberg, as well as Bob Ehrlich (Maryland), Mike Fisher (Pennsylvania), Van Hilleary (Tennessee), Rick Perry (Texas), Bob Taft (Ohio), and Jeb Bush (Florida). While Giuliani's preference in California for the far more conservative Simon was attributed to his longstanding relationship with his fellow federal prosecutor, he did the same in New Hampshire, endorsing hard-right incumbent Bob Smith in the primary over soft-right challenger Sununu (switching to Sununu in the general).
I have to admit that I was so perplexed the first time I heard Rudy Giuliani's radio ad for Bob Smith that I e-mailed a bunch of folks like Patrick Ruffini to see if anyone knew about some pre-existing relationship between the two or if maybe John Sununu Sr. had denied Rudy a job during Bush I. Bob Smith is after all the poster boy for everything the pro-abortion movement hates, their loathing cemented by the socking moment when he recreated a partial-birth abortion on the floor of the Senate. But no one had heard any secretive reasons. It seemed a straightforward endorsement.
Posted by Orrin Judd at November 23, 2002 8:17 AM