Giuliani Too Weird to be Elected President?
Steven Taylor examines the evidence and finds that, “Hero of 9/11” or not, Rudy Giuliani will have a lot of trouble getting past the “Weirdness Factor.”
He cites a Smoking Gun story on a “secret study” conducted by Giuliani’s own people.
He surely could not have been pleased to read that his “personal life raises questions about a ‘weirdness factor.'” That weirdness, aides reported, stemmed from Giuliani’s 14-year marriage to his second cousin, a union that he got annulled by claiming to have never received proper dispensation from the Catholic Church for the unorthodox nuptials.
Taylor breaks down each of these and finds that they are indeed pretty weird. Further, the fact of two divorces under some pretty, um, weird circumstances may not bode well: “I remember a lot (and I mean a lot) of folks arguing about how can we trust a man to be president if his own wife can’t trust him back in 1992 (and for the next 8 years).”
That’s a fair point. While I think the circumstances surrounding Giuliani’s divorces are less problematic than those surrounding Newt Gingrich’s–both on their face and because he’s a NYC moderate rather than a Southern social conservative–they’re still going to be fairly embarrassing. Then again, John McCain won’t be attacking him on this front, either. And, should it come down to a Hillary-Rudy matchup in November 2008, I suspect the adultery sword will remain sheathed.
The question for Giuliani, I continue to think, is how much 9/11 inoculates him from all that went before. If, as I suspect, the answer is “almost totally,” then he gets to run on ideas and competency. That doesn’t mean he’ll necessarily carry the day–it’s a strong field–but it gets him a shot.