In case you missed it in the course of yesterday’s rushed reporting, here’s an exchange I had with Rudy Giuliani on his plans:
HH: Rudy Giuliani, the obvious truth is that the campaign for the White House begins tomorrow. After the smoke has cleared, and we either celebrate, or we mourn, or we do something in between, the Democrats are immediately going to go on their game, and I assume, Mrs. Clinton will be leading the way. Is that a good analysis? Do we have to assume everything from that? We’re just right immediately into the presidential campaign?
RG: I hope not, but I mean, we have to assume…it sounds like everybody wants to do that. I think the American people deserve a little time off, and a little time for reflection and thought. And I’m certainly going to do that. I’m going to spend the next couple of months taking a look at can you put the people together to raise the incredible amount of money you have to raise in order to do it, what are the issues, what is it you can uniquely contribute, and how strongly do you feel about that. I mean, I think it’s worth some very serious thought. And I’d hope that other people did that, but you know, I think a little bit of thought and a little bit of space would probably be a good thing. But I think it’s going to start real quick. If it doesn’t start the day after, it’s probably going to start at the beginning of the year.
HH: And when do you think you have to make a decision by?
RG: Next year, and probably the early part.
HH: The first quarter? Maybe January?
RG: Well, at least take some real serious steps toward it. I mean, I don’t know exactly the process you follow, but I think just from what I can see now, that might change. But it seems to me that you’ve got to be prepared to start putting an organization together by the beginning of the year.
HH: Now the buzz is out there that perhaps as early as Thursday, Ken Mehlman will leave the RNC and go to work for you. Any truth to that?
RG: Right now, we haven’t talked to anybody about that. Now Ken Mehlman is the best, so I think anybody would love to have him working with them. I mean, Ken has done a great job, both in getting the President re-elected. And however this all turns out, Ken Mehlman and Karl Rove, and…they’ve done an absolutely great job. I mean, we’ve been swimming upstream now for months. So when the results come out, and if you want to be fair, you have to look at what did we have to confront, what did the Democrats have to confront, and what have we accomplished.