Perhaps the biggest oddity of the Republican primary season so far has been that GOP voters keep saying that they want another Reagan, the candidates keep comparing themselves to Reagan at every opportunity, and yet the man who is leading in the national polls, Rudy Giuliani, is about as far apart from Reagan as it's possible to get ideologically while still remaining in the Republican Party. Rudy Giuliani is no Reagan. What he is, and what he would be if he gets the nomination, is our Bill Clinton.
Consider a few things.
Yes, Bill Clinton was impeached for perjury, not for having an affair, but conservatives relentlessly bashed Bill Clinton throughout the nineties for cheating on his wife and degrading the office. Well, morally Rudy Giuliani is every bit as sleazy as Bill Clinton.
He has been married 3 times, which could be forgivable in a President, but he also cheated on his second wife with his current wife, Judith Nathan, and announced his separation from wife number two, Donna Hanover, to her and the world at the same time at a press conference.
This has seldom been discussed during the primary season, which is rather bizarre given that the biggest knock against Newt Gingrich that I heard when he was thinking about running -- from the readers on my blog and other bloggers privately -- was that they were disgusted by his affairs and shabby treatment of his former wife. Yet Rudy, whose Clintonesque private behavior is every bit as appalling as Newt's, has gotten a pass on the issue.
Folks, if you think that nominating a man as sleazy as Rudy isn't going to come back and bite the GOP in the general election after the way we complained about Clinton during the nineties, you're kidding yourself. Moreover, if you think it's out of the realm of possibility that Giuliani would diddle some intern in a back office somewhere once he got out from under the watchful gaze of his wife, you're giving him way too much credit. Any man who will cheat on his second wife will cheat on his third wife, too, if the opportunity presents itself.
The Clintons are also known for the shady cast of characters who surround them. We're talking about people like Sandy Berger, Anthony Pellicano, Charlie Trie, Norman Hsu, and Anthony Rodham. Well, there are early indications that Rudy Giuliani is just as careless as the Clintons about whom he hangs around with.