As "America's mayor," a sobriquet he earned after 9/11, Mr. Giuliani has a unique profile as a presidential candidate. To engineer the city's turnaround, he had to take on a government whose budget and workforce were larger than all but five or six states. (Indeed, his budget his first year as mayor was about 10 times the size of the one that Bill Clinton managed in his last year as governor of Arkansas.) For more than a decade, the city has been among the biggest U.S. tourist destinations, and tens of millions of Americans have seen firsthand the dramatic changes he wrought in Gotham.
Moreover, as an expert on policing and America's key leader on 9/11, Mr. Giuliani is an authority on today's crucial foreign-policy issue, the war on terror. In fact, as a federal prosecutor in New York, he investigated and prosecuted major terrorist cases. As mayor, he took the high moral ground in the terrorism debate in 1995, when he had an uninvited Yasser Arafat expelled from city-sponsored celebrations during the United Nations' 50th anniversary because, in Mr. Giuliani's eyes, Arafat was a terrorist, not a world leader. "When we're having a party and a celebration, I would rather not have someone who has been implicated in the murders of Americans there, if I have the discretion not to have him there," Mr. Giuliani said at the time.
These are impressive conservative credentials. And if social and religious conservatives fret about Mr. Giuliani's more liberal social views, nevertheless, in the general election such views might make this experience-tested conservative even more electable.
Wednesday, February 28, 2007
From City Journal (ht OpinionJournal):