September 19th, 2007
07:11 PM ET
7 years ago

Giuliani: MoveOn.org will help me get elected

Watch part of John King's interview of Rudy Giuliani.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani told CNN Wednesday that he welcomes attacks from the liberal organization MoveOn.org, and predicted that continued criticisms from the group will likely raise his standing among Republican primary voters.

“Frankly, I wish MoveOn.org would do several more commercials attacking me, because if they do it could get me nominated," Giuliani told CNN's John King in London. “They are not exactly the most popular group among Republicans.”

"They have spent $200 or $300 million assassinating the character of Republican candidates, and the fact that they want to personally attack me is probably a badge of honor for me, and probably is going to jump me five points in the Republican primary," he added.

The presidential hopeful has been highly critical of the organization for publishing an ad in the New York Times last week questioning Gen. David Petraeus’ trustworthiness in reporting the latest conditions in Iraq.

MoveOn responded to the criticism with a television advertisement in Iowa — and nationally on CNN — condemning Giuliani for dropping out of the bipartisan Iraq Study Group last year, and alleging he opted instead to hit the high-priced speaking circuit.

In the interview with CNN, Giuliani defended his decision to leave the group charged by Congress to assess the United State's Iraq policy, saying he would "have totally politicized it."

"The reason I didn't: I couldn't give the time to it, and secondly I knew that, ultimately, I could very well be running for president of the United States," Giuliani said. "[H]ad I stayed on that group, their report was put out just at the time I announced for president and it [would have been] totally politicized. It was a mistake to join in the first place."

In the wide-ranging interview, the former New York City Mayor also said that, as president, he will not hesitate to take action against Iran if the country acquires nuclear weapons.

"I think we should be clear that Iran is not going to be allowed to become a nuclear power," he said. "This idea of containment of Iran is too dangerous. Iran is already the biggest state sponsor of terrorism. They already are therefore handing off armaments and weapons to terrorists. [They are the] biggest supplier of it."

"America should be precise what it will do and what it wouldn't do," he added. "And the reality [is] we don't want them laboring under the misimpression that we wouldn't take action."

Giuliani also predicted that the United States would need to maintain a military commitment in the Middle East — including Iraq — for the "indefinite future," and said it was a mistake on the part of the Bush Administration not to increase the size of the military.

“We need a bigger military. We need a larger military,” he said. "This whole engagement in Iraq [and] Afghanistan has shown us that."

Giuliani also faulted Bush for cuts in the CIA's budget.

“The cuts that were made to our intelligence budgets were dramatic,” he said. "I think some of the CIA people described them as gutting the CIA. We've got to rebuild that."


Filed under: New Hampshire • Rudy Giuliani
soundoff (55 Responses)
  1. Matt, Lansdale PA

    Do humanity a favor and fade into the darkness from whence you came.

    September 19, 2007 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  2. Joe Corrao, Brooklyn, NY

    People do NOT listen to Rudy's BS...he was a marginally effective mayor and extremely polarizing one at that...His standing in NYC Sept 10, 2001 was pretty bad, we can not let use "good timing" for his political gain. We need effective leaders NOT an oppurtunist.

    September 19, 2007 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  3. Rocco,Wellington,Fl

    What if we let the fire fighters decide on Giuliani, Game Over!

    September 19, 2007 08:24 pm at 8:24 pm |
  4. Lance Manfredi

    Poor Rudy, he actually takes himself seriously. Maybe he's just so excited to actually be campaigning for his party's nomination for president? 9/11? New York City's Fire Dept have no use for the man. What a bum.
    This man is a putz, and an embarrassment to Italian Americans. Lance Manfredi

    September 19, 2007 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  5. Christian, Tampa FL

    Giuliani is increasingly showing how much of an egomaniac he is. Saying things like "I'm the liberals' worst nightmare" and "I'm one of the four or five most famous Americans around the world" makes him looks silly.

    September 19, 2007 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  6. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    My MoveOn colleagues are appalled when I tell them I will not vote for Hill under any circumstances, like many Democrats. If she is nominated by the death-wish Dems, I will vote for Rudy and deny I did. But my top pick now is Edwards, who is hammering Hill on her fundraisers where she pimps lobbyists to hop into the sack with Congresspeops. Neither she nor Obama are electable, for good and bad reasons, and if the Dems recognize this fact, they win over any GOP pick.

    September 19, 2007 08:28 pm at 8:28 pm |
  7. Patrick, Cincinnati, OH

    "All your nonsense conspiracy theories and third grade insults "

    Funny ... like the pot calling the kettle black as always.

    Third grade insults are about all the republicans have. Stick to what your good at. You'll still lose.

    September 19, 2007 08:30 pm at 8:30 pm |
  8. Andrew, Jakarta, Indonesia

    Good to see so many rational, lucid and well-constructed arguments as to why Rudi Giuliani should not become the next President.

    September 19, 2007 08:52 pm at 8:52 pm |
  9. Paul H. Tempe, Arizona

    Whether it's FOX News or MoveOn.org, these outlets are not representative of the majority of American viewpoints!!!!
    At a time when this country is divided over a unjust war, a Congress that has failed to change anything, and a President in denial -convinced that he's made no mistakes in the last 7 years, ALL candidates- Democrat and Republican -need to try and find some way to bring the majority of the American people together. No matter who you are or what party you belong to, there are always going to be groups of people attacking your policies.
    MoveOn.org only speaks to the FAR left -a website that NO PERSON who votes in the Republican Primary will read and any ads (TV or otherwise) sponsered by the site will fall on deaf ears... it's a REPUBLICAN Primary!!! Why would they care?!?! Any effect MoveOn.org has on the Rep. Primary will be undetectable.
    I guess Giuliani is truly scared of Fred Thompson -who seems to be the more conservative of the two front runners (especially on social issues). Which, at this time in our country- with the War, Illegal Immigration and Healthcare -all citizens should finally realize the true miniscule level of importance trying to change ANY social issue dramatically has at this time. No matter what your beliefs on these issues, there are so many more obviously pressing needs for America.
    When will Giuliani and the rest of all the candidates in both parties start providing specifics on issues that really matter!
    What America desperately needs is somone to pull this country out of the last 7 yrs of hell. Let's do what should've been done the day after 9/11 – using our military might and intelligence power to find Bin Ladin and wipe out him and those hiding him, instead of sending our children into an Iraqi Civil War and thus breeding more hate for the U.S. and future terrorists. Let's find a practical solution to immigration – deporting everyone or giving amnesty to everyone is not a reasonable solution. Let's finally do something about healthcare in this country. Don't just continue the same crap.
    Again, whether it's FOX NEWS or MOVEON.ORG, these outlets are not representative of the majority of American viewpoints!!!!

    September 19, 2007 09:00 pm at 9:00 pm |
  10. Forrest Schrader, Cedar Rapids Iowa

    All I know is that I was in New York on September 11th and lived in New York throughout all of Giuliani's tenure...and he ruled that city through fear and violence. He turned my city into DisneyLand, a tourist trap. In addition, it essentially became a police-state. As much as I dislike Bloomberg for banning smoking, he has been doing an infinitely better job than Giuliani.

    Giuliani also was quite stubborn, like G.W. Bush when it came to taking suggestions about certain things. For instance, when he was told after the first attacks on the WTC in '93 to put the crisis command center underground in Brooklyn, he did no such thing. He kept it in the WTC...so the only reason he was outside during 9/11 was because HE HAD NO OFFICE! Under Bloomberg, you know where the crisis command center is now? Underground in Brooklyn. Giuliani couldn't be worse for the job of President. Leave it to someone who knows a bit about foreign policy, like Kucinich or Edwards.

    September 19, 2007 09:01 pm at 9:01 pm |
  11. Carmen, Miami FL

    I'm not impressed with Giuliani, and I think he's making a mistake by linking himself more and more to an extremely unpopular war and to a general whose report Americans are being shown not to trust as being free of the Bush administration's meddling. MoveOn's won this round...

    September 19, 2007 09:31 pm at 9:31 pm |
  12. HAWK,TEXAS

    RUDY HAD A CHANCE TO DO SOMETHING FOR HIS COUNTRY, HE WAS PICKED TO BE ON THE IRAQ PANEL. BUT IT WAS MORE IMPORTANT TO HIM TO GO OUT AND SPEAK SO HE COULD MAKE MORE MONEY. YEAH. A REAL PATEROTIC MAN, RUDY

    September 19, 2007 09:49 pm at 9:49 pm |
  13. Winston Hsia, San Antonio Texas

    I wouldn't be so sure. Put your head in the sand is not going to cut it.

    September 20, 2007 12:04 am at 12:04 am |
  14. Johney, FL

    This statement by Giuliani seems extremely arrogant. As an independent, I like Rudy, but this statement really casts a negative image of him to me. I think Rudy would make an OK president, but I don't want someone that is this arrogant and naive. This statement was very unpresidential and very disappointing.

    September 20, 2007 12:46 am at 12:46 am |
  15. Steve

    We're in full agreement on something, oh, family loser Rudy baby.

    I too hope Move On keeps making ads about you, but it's time to move on to Repubs that actually might win the nomination.

    How the hell does ol' Rudy think, with his two divorces and father-hating kids, that he's going to get nominated by a party held in thrall by the elusive, and imaginary, perfect family values crowd?

    WOW is this election fun already.

    September 20, 2007 03:20 am at 3:20 am |
  16. Sam IA

    Once again the party of the swiftboaters, hate radio, and Fox whines about someone expressing an opinion, Stones Jim? Standing surrounded by security and saying you are going to have someone kick someone elses ass is stones? You must love Bush.
    Stones are the troops doing the dangerous work in Afghanistan and Iraq. Not the blowhard nonserving elitists who send them there. Get real

    September 20, 2007 04:42 am at 4:42 am |
  17. Joe, Florida

    First visiting Tony Blair and now this, Giuliani better keep his cool, people will realize how desperate he is.

    We know you are dying to be President Rudy, too bad you won't.

    September 20, 2007 07:59 am at 7:59 am |
  18. Jack, Glen Ellyn, IL

    Giuliani lies about the reasons he quit the Iraq Study Group. He was actually was asked to resign because he missed all the initial meetings because they conflicted with his paid speaking engagements. Instead if serving his country by helping correct the worst foreign policy mistake of this century and gain valueable foreign policy experience, he chose increase his own fortune by making millions in speaking fees.

    September 20, 2007 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  19. James, Greensburg PA

    Rudy's arrogance is almost as big as the number of marriages and jilted children. Leaving the Iraq study group isn't the only thing that Rudy is well known for! This guy wants to ride 9/11 for all it's worth. Oh yeah, how much time have you spent helping the NYFD get the help it needed? Too bad they were just another example of those you leave behind as you seek your own personal glory!

    September 20, 2007 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  20. Veronica, Stamford, CT

    If Guiliana thinks all it will take for her to win is MoveOn.org, she's even more delusional than I originally gave her credit for. It's nice to see Guiliana make her pitiful attacks against MoveOn as her top priority, like we have no other issues to face in this country but MoveOn.org. Will she institute the draft to take it on? Will she bulk up our weapons arsenal to quell its treasonous free speech?

    Keep going with this Guiliana – you are only strengthening the resolve of those who are not stupid enough to vote for George W. Bush, II. Fear mongering is a thing of the past; just as fake bravado is a thing of the past ... you're already washed up Guiliana.

    September 20, 2007 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  21. Pat, Huntington, NY

    Hey Mr. Springfield! It's true, Rudy wasn't the worst mayor. However, while he did some good for NYC, having inherited some of it from his democrat predecessor and having some major help by then democrat President Bill Clinton's extra cops on the street, he was very much disliked by most NY'ers by the end of his mayoralship. He lacks the character needed to be a good president. He's extremely divisive, made a number of politically motivated bad decisions [i.e. putting the office of emergency management in the WTC after the 1993 bombing], and ran City gov't like a bully, refusing to work with the City Council, and steadfastedly standing by the cops who beat the crap out of and sodomized with a broom stick handle, Abner Louima. That's not the kind of guy we want in the White House.

    September 20, 2007 11:16 am at 11:16 am |
  22. Paul, Phoenix, Arizona

    Moveon.org will have nothing to do with Rudy being elected. He would be better off running around to every polling place in the US and pulling the lever for himself.

    September 20, 2007 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  23. Cable King Pittsburgh Pa

    Moveon.org has spent "$200-$300" in character assassination of Republicans (of course, most of what they state is either factual, or simply opinion). Some proof (independent citation)of Rudy's numbers would be in order.

    Methinks Rudy is just throwing out wild numbers – that's par for the course for most "public servants" who really have no appreciation for what a buck means to we common folks

    September 20, 2007 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  24. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    Even if MoveOn.org supported Giuliani he still wouldn't win. Giuliani using words like "could" and "probably" certainly don't give an impression as a strong political candidate. He needs more than a "badge of honor".

    September 20, 2007 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  25. Tricia M Charlottetown PEI

    laurinda,ny

    No your not the only one that noticed Rudy's eyes. I have too...and it's Scarry! They look like they're going ot pop right out of his head at any given moment!

    He hasn't got a snowballs' chance in Hades of winning the election with or without Move On Org. His friends are comprised of the lower class ignomities of the world.

    September 20, 2007 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
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