Long Island Congressman Peter King (R-NY) told a gaggle of reporters at dinner last night that former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani was “very close” to jumping into the race for the 2012 GOP presidential nomination. Rep. King is a friend and political ally of Mr. Giuliani’s and is presumably privy to his thinking.New Yorkers are likely to greet this news with considerable scepticism. Mr. Giuliani is famous for being “very close” to running for elective offices (like US Senator and Governor of New York), only to back away at the last moment. His last campaign, for the 2008 GOP presidential nomination, was a disaster. He wasted a great deal of money, he had no strategy, his campaign operation was a mess and he ended up with exactly one delegate.
It is unlikely that the fund-raisers who made possible the last campaign will be enthusiastic about raising money for this one, unless they are convinced that it will professionally managed and sharply focused. It is also unclear what constituency Mr. Giuliani imagines might propel his campaign forward.
He is not a favourite of the GOP’s social conservative base. He comes from the GOP’s least important region (the Northeast). So-called establishment Republicans are hardly clamoring for him to enter the race. Libertarian Republicans seem committed to Rep. Ron Paul.
That leaves him with a “maverick” candidacy, a positioning now occupied by former US Ambassador Jon Huntsman. Amb. Huntsman’s political team is vastly more experienced (and competent) than the crew working for Mr. Giuliani. So it would appear, at least on paper, that Mr. Giuliani’s campaign has no credible route to the GOP nomination.