The answer is or.
Rudy Giuliani, if nothing else, is a very complicated man with good sides and bad.
I have to be honest. I’ve always had fun covering him. I think when he’s at his best, he can be a really good person with great ideas, the kind of person you want to hang out with and listen to.
In fact, on my resume, I have a section in which I quote people saying nice things about me and I have a quote from Rudy saying there needs to be more reporters like me.
He was someone who really was not a very good politician who was able to take advantage of good timing, smarts and the ability to surround himself with some equally smart people and set the city on the path to being cleaner and safer.
Here’s the thing. As he’s gotten older, he’s actually gotten worse at politics. He wasn’t a good mayor because he was a good politician. He was a lousy politician destined to be remembered as someone who squandered a lot of good will and was perceived as having to have abandoned his race for Senate after it became public he had left his wife.
Still, September 11th allowed him to reinvent himself as America’s Mayor and he was pretty much given a free pass for a while.
What seems to have happened next was that he started to believe his own publicity, believe that being America’s Mayor meant being a good politician and that he would be a good, if not great, politician as a result.
And he ran a campaign that was best summed by then candidate Joe Biden who said: “A noun. A verb. 9/11.”
And when he was forced to drop out he didn’t seem to recognize how he had been mocked and continued to hold himself out as a spokesman for all things 9/11-related.
Which bring us to yesterday.
Appearing on Good Morning America, Giuliani said::
“We had no domestic attacks under Bush. We’ve had one under Obama.”
Now, forget about for now that ABC didn’t challenge him on it until later — like when he was off the air and they just posted something on their blog.
Let’s even give him a pass and take his spokesman at his word when he says that Giuliani has not forgotten September 11 and was “clearly talking post-9/11.”
That still leaves
Hasan Akbar, who in 2003, killed two and wounded 12 of his fellow soldiers at a base in Pennsylvania because he didn’t want them training to kill Muslims;
The Anthrax attacks of 2001, which killed five people;
The Beltway Snipers who killed at least ten;
and then, of course, there were numerous attempts such as Richard Reid and Ahmed Ressem.
The point is that Rudy’s become like an aging pitcher who has lost most of his stuff but still has one great pitch so they move him to the bullpen. Well, he’s now lost that one last pitch and it’s time for him to leave the stage for a while before he really embarrasses himself.