Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

No Left Turns

Giuliani in Atlanta: a quick first take

I’ll have more tonight, once I’ve had a little time to gather my wits and my links, but for now, I’ll say a few things.

Giuliani spoke to a packed room of 250, most of whom responded well to what he had to say, both in his stock remarks and in his off-the-cuff responses to questions. He led with (what he and I regard as) his strengths--national security and domestic economic policy--and avoided (what I at least regard as) his weaknesses--social policy, like abortion. (The closest he came to that was in response to an off-the-wall question about killing unwanted animals: he’s against it, would promote adoption, and doesn’t regard it as a federal issue. Should we read something into this?)

I’ll basically stand and cheer his general approach to foreign policy any day: if we stand up to "bullies, tyrants, and terrorists" (more or less a direct quote), they’ll back off. If we show weakness, we’ll be attacked again and again. He buttressed this with discussions of Hitler, communism (with favorable references to Reagan, Thatcher, and Pope John Paul II), the treatment of the Palestinian terrorists apprehended after the Munich Olympics attack on the Israeli atheletes, the treatment of those responsible for the murder of Leon Klinghoffer, and, finally, the response to the first WTC attack.

On domestic policy, he understands and can articulate well the difference between Republicans who believe that markets promote the common good and Democrats who appear not to (my weasel words, not his).

If I were a single-issue voter, he would have won me with his opening remarks--a favorable reference to liberal arts colleges that betrayed a certain understanding of what goes on (or can go on) in them. Surely a DoE in the Giuliani Administration wouldn’t be engaging in the regulatory overreach that the Bush DoE is.

But I’m not a single-issue voter....

As I said, more later (with a few words on the topic that wasn’t mentioned on my fair campus).

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