Rudy’s sour-grapes strategy?

Apparently, Rudy Giuliani is continuing to concentrate on Florida. Note this piece in the WSJ today:

    With his status as front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination slipping, Rudy Giuliani will attempt to stanch his campaign’s slide Saturday, with a major address aimed at shifting the spotlight from the controversies that have dogged him in recent weeks.
    The location of the speech will be as significant as the substance. At a time when most of his rivals are slogging through the snow of the first two states to hold votes — Iowa, which votes Jan. 3, and New Hampshire, which has a Jan. 8 primary — the former New York mayor will speak from Florida, which won’t hold its primary until the end of January.
    That underscores Mr. Giulani’s unconventional strategy of playing down the first-voting states to concentrate on the larger, more delegate-rich regions, where his social moderation and big-city roots are likely to play better. But "it is a perilous strategy to ignore the results of Iowa and New Hampshire. You really have to pull a political rabbit out of the hat to become the nominee if you lose both of those states," said veteran political consultant Tobe Berkovitz, now interim dean of the College of Communication at Boston University.

So which do you think it is?

  • That Giuliani actually thinks going straight to Florida — bypassing Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina (which this story fails to mention) — is a smart strategy in itself;
  • or, he knows he can’t win in the early states, so he’s setting up plausible deniability, so that he can say, "Aw, I didn’t wanna win those states anyway."

Either way, it’s pretty unconventional.

4 thoughts on “Rudy’s sour-grapes strategy?

  1. Doug Ross

    It’s definitely the latter. Rudy’s shtick won’t play in conservative Iowa… and in New Hampshire, all his opponents have to do is show pictures of Rudy in his Yankees hat and he’s dead meat there. Red Sox Nation will NEVER vote for a New Yorker.
    If he doesn’t win Florida, he’s absolutely done.
    Same goes for McCain. If he can’t come up with a win in the first three, he’s done as well. Based on current polling, there is a plausible chance that he could finish 6th behind even Ron Paul in Iowa. And just wait til Paul’s next money bomb drops tomorrow (Dec 16)… should add another $3 million or more to his already stunning 11.5 haul since October 1. Paul will be in it for the LONG haul.

  2. Brad Warthen

    Oh, I agree about Ron Paul. He’s been on the national scene since 1988, so why should he go away? He’s like Ralph Nader and Dennis Kucinich and Alan Keyes that way — or maybe even Harold Stassen. In fact, I would go so far as to say he does those others one better — he has a devoted following that will probably stay devoted.
    But he won’t ever be president. Other candidates who aren’t leading now, such as McCain or Biden or even my old pal John Edwards, have a level of acceptance among people who are not among their loyal following… Even people who don’t particularly like them now might shrug and pull the lever for them if it comes to that. I just don’t think Dr. Paul has that kind of acceptance among the majority of people who are not attracted to him now. And I know this sounds odd, but I think part of that lack of acceptance is engendered by the very fervor with which his followers embrace him. Plenty of folks find that off-putting in and of itself.
    Also, once you get tagged as an eccentric by the mainstream, it’s hard to shed the image.
    Look at Howard Dean, who was done in by both of the factors I mentioned just now. The very intensity of the Deaniacs made outsiders feel a little like they were beholding a cult of some kind. And then “the scream” did him in for good. Which is really unfair to him, because he’s generally a pretty reasonable guy. But it’s hard to shake that impression once it’s formed.

  3. Gordon

    For Rudy, going to Florida is like staying in NYC. There are more New Yorkers in south Florida than in New York. It’s home, for him, and Miami is NY South. Same urban cesspool politics.
    Rudy’s right to ignore SC; we’re Huckabee country. And Iowa? Well, he could be mistaken for a UFO, or least a visitor from another planet. New Hampshire, despite the natives, is largely a haven for metrolites from Boston to Long Island. I would have put snow shoes on Rudy and slogged cross-country to every crossroad wine and cheese bar.

  4. bud

    Rudy Guiliani cannot be taken seriously as a candidate for all the people any more. His latest thinly veiled assault on Jimmy Carter is enough to make you want to vomit. Rudy’s latest radio ad claims that Ronald Reagan successfully freed the Iranian hostages after a mere 1 hour in office. That’s good for a laugh! There are two possibilities concerning the hostage situation: one that is fairly neutral concerning RR, the other sheds the legacy of the great communicator in a very damning light.
    Possibility number 1 suggests that the Iranians had grown weary of the hostage issue and the change of presidents gave them a convenient way out. This possibility is likely given the ongoing war with Iraq that was already sapping their strength. Delaying the release of the hostages until Reagan was sworn in merely served as a final slap in the face to Carter.
    The other possibiliy is far more diabolical. It has been suggested, and circumstantial evidence strongly supports this theory, that Reagan’s cronies were working secretely behind the scenes to sell arms to the Iranians to finance the Contras in Nicarauga. Conventional wisdom holds that this illegal action occurred after Reagan took office but it may have been cooked up as a way of releasing the hostages before the 1980 election.
    The fact remains that all the hostages taken by the Iranians were returned safely to their families, while many of the hostgages captured by terrorists during Reagan’s tenure were killed. That result occurred in spite of the fact that Reagan was willing to negotiate with terrorists at the expense of U.S. prestige and the law. The actions of Ronald Reagan were far from being tough. They were, in fact, cowardly to the max and today the teorrorists remember how Reagan could be played like a fiddle. And American security continues to suffer as a result. Rudy Guilliani makes me sick with his disgusting spin on the facts.


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