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The Charisma Of Courage

Tuesday, November 13, 2007  |  posted by Hugh Hewitt
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Stephen Hayes pointed me to this Jake Tapper and Katie Hinman piece on Rudy from last week.  It is a fascinating read on many levels, but these graphs on Louis Freeh’s time under Rudy are very interesting:

Louis Freeh would go on to become director of the FBI in the1990s, but back then he ran the organized crime unit under Giuliani. He said, “Rudy’s security was a serious issue.

“We would sit down with him and sort of give him a security plan or advise him that he ought to have a bodyguard when he traveled around,” said Freeh. “He would listen to us as he always did very carefully and say, ‘I don’t want that. Our job here is to be U.S. attorneys and prosecutors and if we are walking around with bodyguards we are sending the wrong message. We tell the mafia that we are afraid of them. And we are not.'”

Just last month, courtroom testimony revealed that the heads of the notorious five families voted on whether or not to put out a hit on Giuliani. The vote was 3-2 against the hit. 

“Which means I won the vote … I guess,” Giuliani said, laughing.

When it was pointed out that Giuliani was awfully jovial when discussing almost being whacked, the former mayor said it comes with the territory.

“After awhile, you become calm about it,” he said. “When you go through it, as a young man, often enough, you get used to it.”

A Giuliani presidency would be drama-filled and certainly unpredictable in many ways.

But there would be no going wobbly in the war.  Period.  Cue the Andrew Jackson analogies.

Rudy’s support will not drop much below where it is because of the number of voters who think the war against the jihadists is the only issue and Rudy the best man to wage that war.  When McCain drops out Rudy will pick up most of those voters as well as that is the only issue on which Senator McCain has appeal.

But the faith-based electorate will quickly unite against him behind Romney as the primaries advance toward the big February 2 showdown and beyond.

If Rudy wins that battle with Romney, the GOP will spend the next nine months reminding the values voters that Thucydides was right: “The secret to happiness is freedom, and the secret to freedom is courage.”

Rudy needs to start talking about religious freedom and the right to be left alone to worship as you please.  He will probably never win over the hearts of values voters, but he can appeal to their minds and to their real sense that a Clinton Administration and Hillary’s judges would move to narrow greatly the space given to religious freedom in America.  He can also speak to the idea of bringing order to inner cities where gangs prevent kids from reaching their adulthood, and schools that fail despite a thousand carrots dangled in front of them.  As a candidate of ordered liberty and personal courage, Rudy can overcome the deep hostility of the values voters.

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