Last Wednesday, Rudy Giuliani attended a private dinner with Governor Scott Walker. There he challenged President Obama’s patriotism and criticized him for what he considered weak foreign policy decisions. He said the President didn’t truly love his country and didn’t have the right values:
“I do not believe, and I know this is a horrible thing to say, but I do not believe that the president loves America. He doesn’t love you. And he doesn’t love me. He wasn’t brought up the way you were brought up and I was brought up through love of this country.”
This didn’t go over well. Many people condemned the remarks as racist. Among the people doing the condemning was Mike Paul, who had once worked for Giuliani when the latter was mayor of New York. In an interview with Steve Kornacki on “Hardball,” he called Giuliani’s remarks an “abomination.”
Paul added that such comments meant that Giuliani could no longer claim to be “America’s mayor.” His comments also showed that he did not represent America, just a small group of right-wing extremists. Giuliani had also exhausted the good will and clout that he had earned through his guidance of New York City immediately after 9/11.
While Giuliani does deserve credit for his actions immediately after 9/11, he had obviously hoped to parlay the resulting recognition into a political career. He stumped for G.W. Bush in 2004. He ran as a Republican candidate for President into 2008, ultimately losing to John McCain.
The irony is that if Obama had been a white man, Giuliani and the other Republicans would probably be hailing him as proof that the American Dream was still viable. If his father had been from, say, Poland or Ireland as opposed to Kenya, Obama would be held up as an example of an immigrant’s kid who had made something of himself in the United States.