Sunday, December 02, 2007


You have to take random-interview newspaper surveys with many grains of salt, but to me this one rings true (and note that it's from the New York Daily News, a paper that's been giving it to Rudy with both barrels, not Rupert Murdoch's Post):

N.H., Iowa Republicans care more about terror than Rudy Giuliani's trysts

Many voters shrugged off the renewed spotlight on Rudy Giuliani's extramarital affair...

"Anybody who is a mayor or President, they always have security whether it's on personal time or business time," said Sam DeYoung, of Swanzey, N.H. "It seems like they're trying to make a lot of nothing."

...Amy Underwood, 19, an engineering student at the University of New Hampshire, said last week's bookkeeping scandal won't affect her vote.

"I guess I don't really care so much about that when I look at the progress that was made on New York City under his power," she said.

Judy Romine, 65, of New Virginia, Iowa, who raises horses and goats, was unfazed.

"It's like Bill Clinton all over again, isn't it?" she said, referring to Clinton's affair with White House intern Monica Lewinsky. "He's not the first President to have affairs, and, hell's bells, he won't be the last." ...

That's pretty much what I predicted voters would say when I first posted about this. Voters are numb to all but the worst financial scandals. And divorce and adultery are so commonplace in this country that nobody cares. (Isn't that what many of us were saying back in the '90s during Monicagate -- that the public was way ahead of the finger-wagging reporters on whether consensual extramarital sex was a hanging offense? Have we forgotten that in this case because the cheater is a guy we don't like?)

We're told that a reporter asked him about the scandal at a town hall forum in New Hampshire, but the civilians didn't. We're told that former Maryland governor Bob Ehrlich, who's with the Giuliani campaogn, is concerned, but voters aren't.

I fear Rudy's coming out of his tailspin right now (assuming he ever really was in a tailspin in the first place) -- the "shag fund" scandal was at least temporarily forgotten when the Hillary hostage crisis happened, and now Rudy gets an early Christmas present in the form of a new poll showing Huckabee five points ahead of Romney in Iowa (a Huckabee win in Iowa = no Romney sense of inevitability after Iowa and New Hampshire = a big fat opening for Giuliani). So don't count him out yet.

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