August 7th, 2007
06:00 PM ET
15 years ago

Giuliani faces question on Catholicism

(CNN) – Asked whether he considers himself to be a traditional practicing Catholic, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani declined to discuss his faith during a campaign stop in Davenport, Iowa on Tuesday.

The Republican presidential candidate, a supporter of abortion rights, called it “a matter of individual conscience.”

“My religious affiliation, my religious practices and the degree to which I’m a good or not-so-good Catholic, I prefer to leave it with the priests,” said Giuliani in response to a question from a member of the audience at his campaign forum. “I don’t believe there should be a religious test for public office. I think America’s beyond that.”

Questions on a candidate’s religion have become prominent in the Republican race. Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney recently told a Des Moines radio host that he wasn’t “running to talk about Mormonism” after a long string of questions, and Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback asked for an apology from former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee in response to a supporter’s e-mail questioning Brownback’s Catholic faith.

- CNN's Mark Norman 

Filed under: Uncategorized
soundoff (14 Responses)
  1. Lance, Monrovia, Ca.

    A practicing Catholic? Um... excuse me, but adultry is verboten in the Catholic Church. If you break your marriage vows you are ex-communicated immediately, unless you can get the marriage annuled.

    Rudolf isn't welcome at Catholic mass, trust me. He's been divorced twice. Remember Henry VIII, the dude that killed all those wives and finally created the Church of England because The Catholic Church wouldn't let him get a divorce?

    Well, Rudolf should create his own church too. Maybe the church of 9/11, you'd think he was the patron saint as many times as he brings it up.

    August 7, 2007 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  2. Greg, Phoenix, AZ

    Just to keep score, I believe Giuliani has been attacked for:

    1) being Catholic

    2) being married more than once

    3) having a daughter that didn't see eye to eye with him on everything

    4) having a wife that others consider a gold digger

    5) having moderate social views on abortion and gay rights

    6) not wanting NYC firefighters to needlessly lose their lives trying to rescue others who had no chance to be alive long after the buildings collapsed

    Well let's see, 5 out of 6 could describe half the country and the last one was staged by the same group that supported the other party's candidate in the last election. Not to mention a tad bit biased I might add.

    For the Democrats sake, they better hope they are saving the best stuff for last because I dare sat this isn't gonna cut it.

    August 7, 2007 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  3. James, NY, NY

    According to the teachings of the Catholic church who is a good Catholic? Just like every other religion out there, there will always be individuals who don't follow their claimed religion to a T. People are only human and only God as the head of the Catholic Church should be making that call (That's right God, not the pope).

    What really matters as a presidential candidate is the persons ability to do what they say they will and not change their mind on the latest poll. If your changing your mind it better be based on the facts, not because the President woke up and saw he was lagging in the polls

    August 7, 2007 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  4. Jerry Skirvin, Jacksonville, FL

    Wasn't it Ted Kennedy who originally called him Obama-sama? What about the whacko's calling President Bush "Hitler"? That's probably OK, right? Typical liberal IDIOTS!

    August 7, 2007 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  5. James, Phoenix AZ

    The MSM dogs republican candidates about their personal religious views (when the candidates clearly aren't interested in making it a campaign issue). But if one of these candidates were elected (and happend to make a reference to their faith) – good lord would the "Separation of Church and State" mantra ring for weeks!

    Keep stiring the pot, MSM – you've got to sell newspapers, magazines, and draw viewership. Perhaps one day the average Joe is just going to finally ignore this hype and stop buying your magazines. What will you do then??

    August 7, 2007 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  6. Connie, Louisville, Tn.

    "I don't believe there should be a religious test for public office".

    The first intelligent thing he has said.

    August 7, 2007 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  7. Jeff Spangler, Arlington, VA

    Translation: I'm a closeted "cafteria Catholic" because I know how wrong the Big Church is on many things, and don't like to discuss it for fear of losing my chance to beat the Dems' unelectable candidate.

    August 7, 2007 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  8. Zak Washington DC

    The thing I like about Rudy (besides his accent) is the scandalicious nature of his life. He's a real decadent New Yorker, and if it weren't for his hawkish and authoritarian attitude on military and police issues, I would support him.

    Of course he isn't a religious Catholic. He probably doesn't even believe in God and probably has contempt for religion and religious people too. He is a true New Yorker when it comes to his social style and friends.

    I give him credit for ducking, rather than lying, on the religious issue.

    You go Rudy!

    August 7, 2007 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  9. John ,Long island, NY

    This man is a major joke. All he does is use 9/11 to evoke fear into the American people. With his lovely three marriages, his wife's three marriages, his distant relationships with his kids, his horrible appointments when he was mayor ( Kerik had Mafia ties), it just shows that all he cares about his power. That is the only reason why he is running for president... he thinks that the American people will forget about his horrible relationships and just judge him based on 9/11.

    August 8, 2007 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  10. Anonymous

    No, no ones beyond that. If you can't be like the forefathers you should stick to running the mafia or whatever it is you do besides politics.

    August 8, 2007 08:51 am at 8:51 am |
  11. Anonymous

    So... that's a no.

    August 8, 2007 08:54 am at 8:54 am |
  12. Colin, Milwaukee WI

    Well Rudy handled the question well and hopefully he's right about America being beyond a religious test for public office. However, his multiple divorces will not make it easy to pander for the Catholic (or any other Christian group) vote.

    August 8, 2007 11:14 am at 11:14 am |
  13. Jane, Long Beach, CA

    Come on now John, what is worse failed relationships someone left, or being married to a guy who still has chickies on the side after getting caught on numerous occasions. In case your not bright enough to figure it out, I am referring to Hillary. She portrays herself as a feminist, but true feminist would have kicked Billy Boy to the curb the 1st or second time it happened. But I guess she likes playing the part of the fool because she cares more about being President then having any dignity or self respect

    August 8, 2007 12:18 pm at 12:18 pm |
  14. Carl, Dallas, Texas

    Guess what kids. Religion has nothing to do with politics, and if you vote based on that alone...

    we'll have another President Bush in the office... Whether the next one is from the right or left side, we'll know next november...

    August 10, 2007 10:19 am at 10:19 am |