October 23rd, 2007
09:31 AM ET
8 years ago

Rangel: Giuliani 'embarrasses us'

Watch Wolf Blitzer's interview with Rep. Rangel.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - New York Rep. Charlie Rangel, a prominent supporter of Hillary Clinton, sharply criticized Republican presidential frontrunner Rudy Giuliani's personal life Monday, highlighting the fact that the former New York City mayor and his wife have each been married three times.

"Two people, six spouses. It's a little complicated if you're not religious, especially if you're running against a Mormon," Rangel told CNN's Wolf Blitzer in a reference to Giuliani's chief rival, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. For the record, Romney has only been married once.

"I think America has to look at all these things, and there are enough moles on this man that embarrasses those of us who have sought public life," the 19-term New York congressman added. "When we get involved in public life, it means we're in a goldfish bowl. It would seem to me, with all the breaks the mayor had, being involved with his personal problems, he would thank God he's gotten as far as he did go without making the politicians get involved in his personal life."

Rangel brushed aside the notion that criticizing Giuliani's personal life exposes Hillary Clinton to similar criticism. The former first lady’s own marital troubles have been well documented.

"You can say it over and over and over again. This woman got married [and] stayed married [to] the same husband. When they had problems, she stuck with him. You tell me what in her personal life is something she should be ashamed of, and I want to talk about it."

Contacted by CNN, Giuliani spokeswoman Maria Comella said, "This kind of ugly, personal attack isn't even worth a response."

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- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

soundoff (264 Responses)
  1. Jon Queens NY

    I'm not sure what is particularly noble about sticking with a husband who has so publically humiliated you and defiled the office you now seek to hold. That is unless staying married to him is a political asset. A marriage of convenience for Hil vs. true love x3 for Rudy

    October 23, 2007 06:24 am at 6:24 am |
  2. Dyinglikeflies, New York, NY

    The Republican campaign machine and its many friends in the press will shout how distasteful this line of "attack" on Giuliani is. And it will be a big, hypocritical joke when they do, because as far as they are concerned the notion of "values" and "personal responsibility" can only be applied to Democrats, not themselves. The plain fact is that Giuliani has led a completely irresponsible personal life, and it is absolutely valid to argue that it speaks to his judgment and his "values".

    October 23, 2007 06:24 am at 6:24 am |
  3. Joe, Wilmington, DE

    Suggesting divorced/remarried people are morally defected is a bit of a slippery slope in a country where the divorce rate is at 50%. Suggesting the Clinton's have a good marriage is a bit of a joke. Are you on drugs Mr. Rangel? I am a registered Democrat, and divorced, and cannot believe you would make such a stupid, irresponsible statement. Perhaps we should scrutinize your personal life and grade your morality. What might we find?

    October 23, 2007 06:50 am at 6:50 am |
  4. Chris M. (Boston, MA)

    Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones. At latest count, Rangel has 5 illegitimate children. Thanks for embarrassing yourself yet again Congressman. If "irresponsible personal life" was a term in the dictionary, your picture would be all anyone would need to know the definition. Rudy is a saint compared to this guy.

    October 23, 2007 07:02 am at 7:02 am |
  5. chris york sc


    October 23, 2007 07:05 am at 7:05 am |
  6. Joe, Jackson, NJ

    Does it really matter how many times Mr. Giuliani has been married? Did his marital status have any affect on his performance during the 9-11 attacks?

    Ms. Clinton obviously hasn't been married three times. She just stayed married to a man that had an affair in front of the entire world while holding the most powerful office on the planet.She was wronged and from what we witnessed, did nothing about it. Is this the kind of leadership we want representing America?

    October 23, 2007 07:10 am at 7:10 am |
  7. Joe Mathews, Manchester, VT

    People who live in glass houses shouldn't throw stones!. Rangel's turned into a cheap political hack plus makes Clinton's personal, legal
    and other transgressions open to discussion and condemnation. How about those China town contributors who aren't registered to vote and have no known address, Charlie?

    Until a candidate's personal life affects their performance in office, it should be off limits. Guess the "Coronation Group" is getting scared. Dispicable conduct from someone who should know better.

    October 23, 2007 07:17 am at 7:17 am |
  8. Scott Richardson, Bloomington, IL.

    Clinton is sharp and can handle herself. She really doesn't need help from Rangel or anyone else holding her own.

    As a supporter of hers at this point in time, I would rather see the campaign stick to issues of substance, like the war and the building human and financial debt it is causing, than personal attacks. After all, he wasn't married to them at the same time, was he?

    "Let he without sin..." In America, those folks seem harder and harder to find.

    October 23, 2007 07:20 am at 7:20 am |
  9. Dave

    This is not only a personal attack on Giuliani, it’s an attack on everyone divorced person.

    If these personnal attacks are allowed to continue then the most qualified will think twice before running for high office... what a big mistake.

    October 23, 2007 07:25 am at 7:25 am |
  10. SM Johnson

    Her problem is that she stayed with Bill Clinton. If she couldn't stand up to her husband, how will she be able to run the country.

    October 23, 2007 07:29 am at 7:29 am |
  11. ross, johnstown, pa

    Hey Charlie,
    Anything to say about the Reverand Jesse? Didn't think so!

    October 23, 2007 07:32 am at 7:32 am |
  12. Joe, Houston Texas

    It's amazing that people would even consider Giuliani for street sweeper with his reputation. How can any so called christian vote for such a man? Everyone makes mistakes but what Giuliani did is off the charts. There is one thing to commit adultery, but to live an adultureous lifestyle is totally unacceptable. It makes you almost vomit to look at the man. It's like staring at Satan. He is one of the most deceptive individuals I have ever seen.

    October 23, 2007 07:32 am at 7:32 am |
  13. Jacque Bauer, Los Angeles, CA

    Clinton, Rangel & Democrats: talk about the pot calling the kettle black! They are beneath contempt.

    October 23, 2007 07:33 am at 7:33 am |
  14. Ryan, Boston

    At least Giuliani's wives weren't all at the same time like the mormon's did...

    October 23, 2007 07:35 am at 7:35 am |
  15. Jeany Morbach, Albany, NY

    Just what Hillary needed. SAD!

    October 23, 2007 07:36 am at 7:36 am |
  16. Gabriel, Clifton, NJ

    3 wives or not, he's running on the whole "TERROR" bit so I dont think people will really care how many times he was married. I just dont get why people support this guy anyway, the $9.11 fundrasing stunt was enough for me.

    October 23, 2007 07:39 am at 7:39 am |
  17. Timothy Ericson, Philadelphia, PA

    I think that Giuliani's personal life shows that he is a man that will not settle for what is not right. George Bush will stick with what is wrong, like the war on Iraq, becauase he is stubborn. Giuliani is a man who is not afraid of change as long as he gets it right.

    October 23, 2007 07:43 am at 7:43 am |
  18. Terry , Atlanta GA

    Thats a real low blow. Totally unnecessary. Him having 3 wives has nothing to do with him being an effective president or not.

    Hillary has skeletons in her closet herself, and the Republicans are going to expose her dirt in 2008, little by litte. She is not the paragon of virtue she may pretend to be, which we'll all see soon enough.

    October 23, 2007 07:49 am at 7:49 am |
  19. AJ; Montpelier, VT

    I'm no Rudy fan but who really cares how many times he's been married. His personal life is just that, PERSONAL! If Rangel cant come up with any better ammunition then he should just shut up! What a moron.

    October 23, 2007 07:52 am at 7:52 am |
  20. ReadyandPacked in

    She stayed married to "wild Bill" because she HAD a plan...and it would look bad if she left him...IF she gets into the White House...it will be on HIS coat-tails...she knew that then...she knows that NOW! There is no love in that marriage...it's a "look" she needed to keep....THAT'S WHY SHE STAYED WITH BILL !!

    October 23, 2007 07:54 am at 7:54 am |
  21. KebD, Flint

    Classy, Hillary, classy.

    And, tell us, WHY did you really 'stick by your man' as a self-proclaimed feminist? I think the answer is very clear, especially now.

    October 23, 2007 07:55 am at 7:55 am |
  22. Richard, Bristol, CT

    Well congrats on taking the first personal attack on the spouses. Hillary, yea she stuck with her loser husband, only because she would be nothing and go no where without the name. she's the fool that stays with someone after he cheats more than once, but wise for her political career. Her marriage is a shame. Again congrats, Rangel for putting your two cents in and operating the personal politics of destruction.

    October 23, 2007 07:57 am at 7:57 am |
  23. Linda in Highland MI

    She stayed with "Wild Bill" because she had a plan then and she has a plan NOW! She knew that if she gets into the White House it would be on HIS coat-tails!! So.... she NEEDED him ..and that's what she has and will continue to put up with his "behavior"!! There is NO love in that marriage Mr. Rangel...it's all for SHOW...just like everything they do...it ALWAYS serves a purpose...THEIR PURPOSE!!!

    October 23, 2007 08:03 am at 8:03 am |
  24. Chip Celina OH


    Put a sock in it.

    From townhall.com:
    Sen. Jim DeMint (R.-S.C.) tried to persuade his fellow Senators to remove a project sponsored by New York Rep. Charles Rangel (D.) that would give $2 million in federal money to the Charles B. Rangel Center for Public Policy, the Rangel Conference Center, and the Charles Rangel Library at the City College of New York.

    The "Monument to Me" c'mon Charlie.

    October 23, 2007 08:08 am at 8:08 am |
  25. John Sledz, Pinehurst, NC currently in Iraq

    You've got to be kidding me. Rangel rambles on about Rudy and all he can say is Hillary is strong for sticking with Bill. The ONLY reason she stuck with her husband is he because she NEEDS him to become President. Seriously doubt they sleep in the same bed or have sex together.

    October 23, 2007 08:11 am at 8:11 am |
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