March 6, 2007

richardland.jpg Not many people in the country know much about Rudy outside of New York. Tweety goes on and on about what a great cop Rudy is and America needs a cop as President. I guess he's replaced McCain with Rudy now as his favorite, but Richard Land isn't buying the "cop" theory that Giuliani hopes to capitalize on with conservatives. Paula Zahn:

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ZAHN: But I have been told by some really smart people in -- that -- that make up your base that, when it comes to -- to backing a candidate who they think could beat a Democratic nominee, they would be willing to forgive Giuliani on issues of his being pro-choice and being pro-gun-control just to back a winner.

LAND: Well, I think that they need to spend more time with their base, if they think that.

And you haven't mentioned, in those two issues, the one that is going to give him the most trouble. And that is the fact that he's in his third marriage, and the second marriage ended in a messy divorce, with his second wife taking out a restraining order to keep him from bringing his mistress to the official residence of the mayor of New York. That's a huge character issue.

And I would -- I would say to those people that you talked with, they ought to spend more time talking to the women in their base, who I find are outraged by his behavior and his treatment of his second wife. (Transcipt below the fold)

ZAHN: I would like for you to take a look at a poll with us tonight, a most recent one from ABC News, that shows Giuliani's support among evangelicals almost double John McCain's. Can you explain this to us? Why does John McCain, who opposes abortion rights and same-sex marriage, get killed in that poll by Giuliani?

LAND: Well, first of all, there was a Gallup poll a couple of weeks ago that showed that most of those 44 percent aren't aware of many of Rudy Giuliani's positions.

He is campaigning as the heroic figure that he indeed was in 9/11 and the aftermath of 9/11. And the Gallup poll showed that, when you informed likely Republican voters in primaries of his pro-choice position, his pro-civil-unions position, his pro-gun-control position, and the fact that he's been married three times, his lead over John McCain disappeared.

The second thing I would say is, is that John McCain has his own issues with evangelicals that have to do more with a little more amorphous thing called unpredictability. They know he's pro-life, but I have had numerous pro-life leaders say to me, John McCain is pro- life, but do we have any reason to believe that his being pro-life would have anything to do with who he would nominate to the Supreme Court?

It's that kind of uncomfortability with his unpredictability, the -- the maverick nature that makes him so popular with independents, that gives conservatives pause. I can tell you social conservatives are looking for a new face.

ZAHN: Right.

LAND: And they're looking at the other candidates to see if one can emerge that they can coalesce around, because they're not happy with Giuliani and they're not happy with McCain.

ZAHN: Just very quickly, if -- if these two guys aren't the new faces, is -- is there another face we should be aware of tonight that -- that meets your criteria here?

LAND: Well, look, Sam Brownback and Mike Huckabee are both true- blue social conservatives. They have got to convince the social conservative base that they can win.

ZAHN: All right.

LAND: And that's what they have got to try to do.

ZAHN: Richard Land, appreciate your input tonight

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