Giuliani: Obama owns Occupy Wall Street movement
November 5th, 2011
04:24 PM ET
10 years ago

Giuliani: Obama owns Occupy Wall Street movement

(CNN) - President Barack Obama is responsible for the start of the Occupy Wall Street movement, according to former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

"It would not have happened but for his class warfare," Giuliani said in Washington on Friday. "And remember, as it gets worse and worse - because it's going to get worse and worse - where it came from: Barack Obama."

Giuliani's remarks came while speaking at a summit sponsored by Americans for Prosperity, a conservative organization with deep ties to the tea party movement.

Presidential front-runners Mitt Romney and Herman Cain also spoke at the event.

Giuliani said Obama's economic philosophy–which the former mayor describes as the need to "redistribute the wealth"–closely lines up with the message of the growing movement.

The movement started out as a group of demonstrators on Wall Street upset over unemployment and the economy. It has since expanded to cover a variety of issues, including the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Similar protests have popped up in cities around the world, some of which have been marked by violence.

One faction of the movement even proposed occupying the offices of presidential candidates in Iowa ahead of the caucuses and primary season, which starts January 3.

"I believe this will be the millstone around Barack Obama's neck that will take his presidency down," Giuliani said.

Obama commented on the booming movement in October, saying it "expresses the frustrations that the American people feel."

"People are frustrated and the protesters are giving voice to a more broad-based frustration about how our financial system works," Obama said while taking questions at a news conference about his jobs plan.

The president highlighted the financial regulation bill passed in 2010 as an example of government working to ensure a fair, rule-abiding financial sector.

"The American people understand that not everybody's been following the rules," he said. "That Wall Street is an example of that."

According to an ORC International Poll released Thursday, more Americans say they support the movement as it progresses. Thirty-six percent say they agree with the overall positions of Occupy Wall Street, up from 27% when the survey was last conducted in early October.

Giuliani flirted with a presidential bid for much of the year but announced his decision against running last month.

- CNN's Kevin Liptak contributed to this report.


Also see:


5 GOP pres. candidates praise Regan, berate Obama

Gingrich weighs in on campaign momentum

New poll shows Romney and Obama nearly tied


Filed under: 2012 • Occupy Wall Street • President Obama • Rudy Giuliani
soundoff (143 Responses)
  1. ED FL

    Guilliani and his twin Ginghrich are now over the hill old men and their mistresses and girlfriends do not want to be associated with a couple of old men so now they are trying to pass themselves off as politicians again. It Ain't gonna work Grandpas. Find another hobby like Bingo it is easy to spell!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    November 5, 2011 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  2. Scott in Atlanta

    I don't believe this is an actual Guiliani quote because the phrase "9-1-1" is no where in it. Lies. All lies. Maybe he can get Herman Cain to teach him how to do one of those circular defense arguments that goes around and around, but doesn't really say anything in the end. Then emphatically say, "See!!! That's what I was trying to tell you!"

    November 5, 2011 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  3. Ryan NC

    "the need to redistribute the wealth" ? That's called giving back what the 1% has taken by abusing the system under the Republicans watch!

    November 5, 2011 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  4. Brian

    What I'm confused by is why he's making it out that it is automatically a bad thing that Obama is tied to this movement? The Rich get richer by blocking the means with which the Poor may...Not get rich...But get leveled.

    November 5, 2011 07:14 pm at 7:14 pm |
  5. marty

    Rudy who???

    November 5, 2011 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  6. JasmineLuvsObama

    These Tea Party bozos are so college educated, but no common sense whatsoever!! They would not even know how to survive in the REAL working class world.

    They are just upset because we finally got a president who will stand up to their corruption. Stop trying to cover for your buddies Giuliani! In the REAL WORLD we call these guys haters, and I'll bet you 99% Obama is not sweating them. Vote Obama 2012!!!

    November 5, 2011 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  7. IDEAS and IDEALS not ideologies

    The Obama is in good company. Doesn't the majority of Americans approve of the movement. Many people liked the Tea Party movement when it started but it got hijacked by big money interests and turned into an anti middle class party. The 99% movement is the incarnation of the Soul that tea party lost.

    November 5, 2011 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  8. bill

    Pathetic when 36% of people polled approve of the fleatard riot in Oakland.

    November 5, 2011 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  9. Nevis

    All of this class warfare started with Reagan. He started the rise of the super rich. I don't understand how the republicans can bow a the Reagan alter when it was Reagan who sold arms to Iran and gave chemical weapons to Saddam Hussein. He was losing it long before his dementia was revealed.

    November 5, 2011 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  10. 60's survivor

    Yeah - get a clue!! The GOP masters of forked tongue deception pea shuffling under the nutshell finger pointing gangsters!

    November 5, 2011 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  11. ddt

    THE BI...CH WILL NEVER, EVER BE A PRESIDENT OF THIS COUNTRY.....ALL THAT IS JEALOUSY.GET OVER IT

    November 5, 2011 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  12. jo an

    If Giuliani is against it...I'm for it...I'll send my money to them and become a protestor while in L.A. Thanks G!!

    November 5, 2011 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  13. normajean @ verizon ,com

    First.....this is not the presidents doing in any way!! He is fighting Repubs for every inch he can... This movement started and continued to expand due to the leftover economic disaster from the Bush era and the block headedness of the "party of no". who have fought everything Obama has tried to do from day one....!THIS IS THE PEOPLE TELLING YOU AND YOUR PARTY THAT THEY HAVE A FIGHT ON THEIR HANDS BECAUSE WE'RE "":MAD AS HELL AND WE'RE NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANY MORE.""...GOT THE PICTURE GIULIANI??????

    November 5, 2011 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  14. Not Surprised

    Well..considering OWS=Obama Wants Socialism

    November 5, 2011 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  15. Change Agent

    Giuliani knows it's "going to get worse" because he knows the people who are going to pay to make it get worse. How difficult is it for people like anti-ACORN propagandist O'Keefe to throw a few rocks and start a fight with police?

    November 5, 2011 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  16. nuff said

    When before in history has a sitting President said to the public "March with me" against his own government?-He will destroy this economy

    November 5, 2011 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  17. The Lone Okie

    Nobody owns them, nobodys in charge, and no one central message.

    November 5, 2011 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  18. buckthorn

    Giuliani rarely has anything intelligent to say. This is a good example. What a loser.

    November 5, 2011 08:04 pm at 8:04 pm |
  19. Numyorangay

    Nothing like a has been.

    November 5, 2011 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
  20. LegendRx

    Did you not know of the ripple effect felt around the world, didn't you know it would end up here in our back yard, knocking at the front door of wall street and the house of congress. Try and smash it and be toppled in your attempt. Just like in Egypt, Libya, Syria. Have we not learned anything from watching the uprising of the poor and middle class. We are tired and we are not going to take it anymore. Period.

    November 5, 2011 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  21. T'sah from Virginia

    Actually, Mayor Bloomberg was the first to say it about a week before the first protest took place. He said if things did not get better, an up-rise or movement was going to start here like what's happening all over the world.

    The PEOPLE started the movement. President Obama has been preaching about the top 1% since he started his campaign for 2008!! Why wasn't it an up-rise before??? Why didn't the "silent majority" come forward when the Tea Party was out there screaming about "taking their country back?"

    The LEFT reacts a day later when they feel they have been pushed into a corner and there is no way out!!! We got pushed into a corner!!!

    Obama 2012

    November 5, 2011 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  22. Reggie from LA

    But Obama did not create them Rudy and @Lilltle Jimmy Truth. Y'all are just spinn'in rhetorical lies. However, the TeaParty WAS created, by Cain's "brothers", mothers, or whatever the unholy relationship. What did Bush give us, now that he's come up? We say, don't blame Bush. What did he do for us? All of us? That's what I thought. OWS is about the 99% paying the price of Wall Street. They are cold, peaceful and committed...much more than can be said of Giuliani. What CAN be said of Giuliani is that he is and opportunist, irrelevant, forgone and needs to let it go. Not a national leader.

    November 5, 2011 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  23. laurence

    Rudy, Rudy, Rudy.... what's the matter man??? You lonely? Want the "Occupirs" come pay you visit? Huh? Another wanna be 'good ole' boy' whose integrity challenged.

    November 5, 2011 08:17 pm at 8:17 pm |
  24. Cody

    I didn't vote for Obama, ......but I fail to see how this is his fault.

    November 5, 2011 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  25. Four and The Door

    Giuliani is exactly correct here and anyone who doesn't understand that has not been paying attention. The strategy of class warfare that Obama has chosen for 2012 is a poor excuse for leadership. It is trying to do an end-run around the real issues but who can blame him for that? On the real issues his performance after almost 3 years has been awful.

    November 5, 2011 08:21 pm at 8:21 pm |
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