Directly contradicting his previous position, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination, told radio talk-show host Sean Hannity he opposed federal gun control laws, preferring to leave the matter to states and municipalities.
“I’ve said all along that what’s right for New York might not be right for Texas,” he said in the interview, in which he said he supported the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms.
But that’s not what Giuliani has said all along.
When he presided over the city government of New York, with some of the strictest gun-control measures in the country, Giuliani strongly advocated Washington take the lead on the issue.
“We need a federal law that bans all assault weapons, and if in fact you do need a handgun you should be subjected to at least the same restrictions — and really stronger ones — that exist for driving an automobile,” he said in 1997.
As mayor, Giuliani participated in a city lawsuit against the gun industry.
“This is an industry that is profiting from the suffering of innocent people,” he said in 2000. “What’s worse, its profits rest on a number of illegal and immoral practices. This lawsuit is meant to end the free pass that the gun industry has so long enjoyed.”
And that’s just the beginning of the way Giuliani has tried to redefine himself in hopes of winning the Republican presidential nomination.
While still touting his pro-choice stand on abortion, he is now trying to claim he opposes partial-birth abortions and supports parental consent laws.
Not so in 1999. When he was asked whether he would support a ban on partial-birth abortions, he told CNN: “No, I have not supported that, and I don’t see my position changing.” As if to underline his hard-line stand on social issues, he said: “I’m pro-choice. I’m pro-gay rights.”
Now he tries to take a nuanced stance against same-sex marriage. Yet he steadfastly opposed the “Defense of Marriage Act,” saying in 2004 on “Meet the Press”: “I certainly wouldn’t support (a ban on same-sex marriage) at this time.”
You probably won’t hear Giuliani make this statement again, but he did say it in 1996 to the New York Post’s Jack Newfield: “Most of Clinton’s policies are very similar to most of mine.”
Won’t that be reassuring if he should be the Republican alternative to Hillary Clinton in 2008? And while he’s sugar-coating his record and his positions now as he seeks to lead the Republican Party, it’s clear that he was telling the truth in 1996 and lying now.
Take a look at his record:
Taxpayer support of abortion: supports
Embryonic stem cell research: supports
Federal marriage amendment: opposes
Same-sex domestic partnerships and civil unions: supports
Open homosexuals in the military: supports
Amnesty for illegal aliens: supports
Tough penalties for employers of illegal aliens: opposes
Sanctuary cities that ignore immigration law: supports
What is the difference between Giuliani and Clinton? Is it style? It certainly isn’t substance. Is it simply that Giuliani doesn’t wear a dress? Whoops! No, it can’t be that. America’s mayor is fond of publicly dressing in drag, too.
So what is it? Will the real Giuliani please stand up? Are we going to let this guy reinvent himself the way Mitt Romney has? Aren’t we all smart enough to understand what this game is all about?
If you support Giuliani or John McCain or Romney as an alternative to Hillary or Obama, you’re going to get what you deserve — and that is no choice at all.
There’s a long time before the parties choose their nominees. Let’s make the most of it and search for men of principle and conviction, not flip-flops and deceit.
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