Giuliani avoided questions about a story that he misused public funds as mayor.
OKATIE, South Carolina (CNN) – A normally tranquil retirement community became the scene of a full-on media scrum on Friday as Rudy Giuliani ducked questions about his about possible misuse of public funds during his second term as New York City mayor.
Despite attempts by Giuliani staffers to stop them, nearly a dozen cameramen and several more reporters followed Giuliani and asked questions about the controversy as he shook hands with the audience after a town hall meeting here, his first campaign stop since the billing story broke on Wednesday afternoon.
Asked by one reporter about the controversy, Giuliani said only, "We've already explained it," and hastily kept moving.
Still, the press kept following Giuliani, standard practice on the campaign trail when candidates shake hands and depart venues after their events.
The mayor's usually accommodating staff furiously – and in some cases physically – tried keep reporters away from Giuliani as he walked away, jostling with cameramen and photographers from local and national media organizations in attendance.
No members of the audience asked Giuliani about the story during the town hall meeting. Most of the questions were about illegal immigration, a flashpoint issue in this booming coastal area near Hilton Head.
- CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby