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Bush fixer James Baker kicked Rudy off Iraq Studly Group for poor attendance

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[My bad, as Xan reminds me; late night and exhaustion. Rudy wasn't tossed off the 9/11 panel, but off the ISG, of which Baker was the head. I knew that! I knew that! But it does get better. You know who replaced him? Ed Meese. Jeebus.]

giuliani-drag So, even the Bushies can't stomach the man. Newsday:

Rudolph Giuliani's membership on an elite Iraq study panel came to an abrupt end last spring after he failed to show up for a single official meeting of the group, causing the panel's top Republican to give him a stark choice: either attend the meetings or quit, several sources said.

At some point, Baker spoke to Giuliani to find out if he intended to continue his involvement with the group. "He basically said, if people can't make the meetings, we've got to find people who can," [Leon] Panetta recalled.

Of course, Rudy had his reasons:

Millions of 'em:

Giuliani left the Iraq Study Group last May after just two months, walking away from a chance to make up for his lack of foreign policy credentials on the top issue in the 2008 race, the Iraq war.

He cited "previous time commitments" in a letter explaining his decision to quit, and a look at his schedule suggests why -- the sessions at times conflicted with Giuliani's lucrative speaking tour that garnered him $11.4 million in 14 months.

Giuliani failed to show up for a pair of two-day sessions that occurred during his tenure, the sources said -- and both times, they conflicted with paid public appearances shown on his recent financial disclosure. Giuliani quit the group during his busiest stretch in 2006, when he gave 20 speeches in a single month that brought in $1.7 million.

Yeah, but what about John Edwards and his haircut?

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Submitted by [Please enter a... (not verified) on

And it ties in nicely with Josh's thoughts over at TPM:

things that tank campaigns are seldom the things that are really that big a deal. It's the little facts that puncture the premise of a candidate's campaign. It is the the question that can't quite be answered. The story that sticks.

So take Rudy. His whole campaign is about him as Mr. War on Terror. (He's certainly not running on social policy since he disagrees with most of his constituency on those issues. ) But the upshot of this little story is that Rudy's real priority is money. He literally doesn't have time for finding a solution to the problem we face in Iraq. Couldn't make the meetings.

Again, is it that big a deal? Certainly worse things have happened. Rudy was still in his buckraking phase. I guess the Iraq Study Group got on well enough without him. (After all, Rudy doesn't really have any experience or knowledge about foreign policy.)

But how does Rudy respond if one of his opponents raises this in a debate after Rudy goes on one of his tough-guy-9/11 save-the-word-from-the-arabs tears?

I think this sticks to him like tar. Not because it's the worst thing in the world. Not because it's the most important thing about him or his campaign. But because it's like bubble gum on the shoe of his signature issue. Pick your metaphor, a pin to his balloon. A can trailing after his car. Whatever. It will stick in people's minds and it hits him where he's supposed to be strongest. He cares so much about the Iraq War he couldn't bother to reschedule a few rubber chicken speeches. It's just a matter of which of his opponents throws the first gob.

Then add 3 tbs. of his South Carolina campaign manager getting indicted for over a pound of cocaine, possession with intent to distribute and all those other lovely charges. (He also lost his head guy in Iowa but that's because Bush swiped him to replace the WH budget director, a non-sequiteur if ever there was one.)

Stir that into a personel-management pot that already contains the bubbling stew, with one lump named "Bernie Kerik" and others made up of his (Rude-Eh's) shall we say somewhat convoluted marital history. Spice with an occasional mention that his own children find him so embarassing/infuriating that they have ceased to use his name.

Now toss in his lipstick, his falsies and bustier and that lovely platinum wig, and I can see large numbers of scales falling from eyes and people start to mumble "I was so impressed by this guy why exactly?"

Benefit to Romney at first, possibly Thompson, maybe even split to both. McCain might even bump a point or two but eventually he's gonna figure out that he's not the frog that fell into the bucket of milk, and if he just keeps paddling long enough he'll churn a little lump of butter to sit on and in the morning the milkmaid will chuck him out and he'll be saved. He's the frog all right, but this R presidential pool is better represented by a bucket of shit--and the longer you churn that, the softer it gets. He's about to sink.

Submitted by lambert on

Once again, Corrente brings American political discourse to a new level:

This R presidential pool is better represented by a bucket of shit—and the longer you churn that, the softer it gets.

Yep.

No authoritarians were tortured in the writing of this post.