Tag Archives: Rudy Giuliani

What happened to Rudy?

By JOHN KANELIS / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

I have been thinking of the tragedies that have emerged from Donald Trump’s term as president and I come up — so far — with just one tragic story.

It involves Rudy Giuliani, who’s now serving as Trump’s lead lawyer in the futile and feckless fight to overturn the results of the election Trump lost this month to President-elect Biden.

I mean, I have to collect myself a bit just to comprehend what has happened to the man who’s gone from hero to zero in the span of roughly two decades.

There he was, standing with President Bush after the 9/11 attacks on his city and the Pentagon. Giuliani served as NYC mayor. He became “America’s mayor.” Time magazine named him its person of the year in 2001 for the courage he demonstrated in helping his city  clean itself up after the wreckage that the terrorists delivered on that terrible day.

Before that the mayor served as a crime-fighting, mob-busting federal prosecutor.

I watch the videos of him from back in the post-9/11 era and wonder: What in the name of God in heaven happened to this guy?

He has devolved into a shill for Donald Trump. These days he is fomenting crazy and utterly stupid conspiracy theories about phony election fraud allegations. Did you saw him sweating during that presser this week, with hair dye dripping down both sides of his face? My goodness!

Rudy was ridiculous, citing a scene from “My Cousin Vinny” as evidence in a wacky conspiracy theory.

Well, you know all that. You know that America’s mayor has become America’s fool. I don’t know how you might feel about the deterioration of this once-stellar public servant. I will stand by my view that we are witnessing a tragedy in the making.

It saddens me beyond measure.

What has happened to ‘America’s Mayor’?

Of all the amazing characters who have been caught up in the sausage grinder that passes for a network of friends and associates of Donald John Trump, the transformation of one of them interests me greatly.

What has become of the man known as America’s Mayor?

Rudolph Giuliani has sidled up next to Trump as his personal lawyer and in the process has become the butt of jokes from damn near every late-night comedian in the country; he has morphed into a cartoon character depicting an out-of-control, unhinged fanatic.

Oh, my. It’s astonishing.

I remember how this man emerged as a champion of New York City in the aftermath of the 9/11 tragedy. He stood strong and resolute. He comforted his constituents who were shocked and stunned by the horror of that event. Time magazine named him its Person of the Year for 2001, a richly earned designation for the mayor.

However, over time he seemed to become full of himself. He ran unsuccessfully for president. He’s been divorced a couple of times.

Then along came Donald Trump and there was Rudy, backing the Republican candidate for president.

He reportedly argued on his own behalf for an appointment as attorney general.

Then he joined himself at the hip to Trump when the president got into trouble over the Ukraine matter.

All the while, he has made a spectacle of himself, spouting buffoonery whenever possible. He talks blithely about investigations into Trump foes’ matters. His TV behavior becomes grist for jokes.

I don’t get it. None of it makes sense.

All I am left to do is shake my head.

Rudy needs to settle down and let this probe play out

Rudolph Giuliani reportedly was an excellent federal prosecutor back in the day. I believe the man known formerly as America’s Mayor has lost his edge.

Giuliani now represents the president of the United States, Donald J. Trump. He now says a most remarkable thing.

He said that Trump’s legal team should be allowed to review special counsel Robert Mueller’s findings into the “Russia thing” and “correct” whatever “mistakes” they find in it.

Wow! Where do I begin with this one?

I’ll start with this observation. Imagine federal prosecutor Giuliani getting a request from a criminal defendant who has been indicted by a grand jury. The defendant’s legal team wants to review the criminal complaint and correct what it considers to be “mistakes” in the evidence compiled in the complaint. How do you suppose Rudy would react to that? He would laugh in the lawyers’ faces! As he should!

No can do, Rudy

That’s the reaction I am having today as I read what Giuliani is proposing now with regard to the Mueller investigation.

I am acutely aware that Mueller’s findings will not constitute a criminal indictment, so there’s no direct parallel to be made. There’s enough of a parallel, though, to make it a reasonable comparison.

Mueller’s work should be released to the public upon its completion. Sure, there ought to be some redactions made, blocking public review of findings that deal with national security. I am fine with that. The rest of it should be exposed to the public for our review, for our analysis and for our determination into whether the president did anything wrong while running for office. We should be allowed to determine whether there’s “collusion” or “conspiracy” or an “obstruction of justice.”

Trump’s legal team led by Rudolph Giuliani need not touch that report until we all get to see it at the same time.

For the former New York mayor to make such a request out loud is laughable on its face. Except that it ain’t funny.

No way should Mueller cut off the Russia probe

My ears are about to burst into flames. Or … maybe my head is about to explode, blowing my noggin into smithereens.

Donald Trump’s legal team — led by the likes of Rudy Giuliani and Jay Sekulow — keep yapping that special counsel Robert Mueller needs to call his examination of “The Russia Thing” to a halt. He needs to end it now, they say.

Giuliani suggests Mueller has done something potentially illegal. He ain’t spilling the beans, as if he has any beans to spill.

Look, Mueller is a former FBI director who served under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack H. Obama. He took office right after 9/11. He is a pro. He is a dedicated public servant. He is a decorated Marine who saw combat during the Vietnam War.

He also is a meticulous lawyer who has been tasked by the Department of Justice to find out whether the Trump presidential campaign colluded with Russians who attacked our electoral system.

Mueller’s appointment by DOJ also was hailed universally by Republicans and Democrats. Don’t you remember that? I damn sure do. He deserved the high praise he got from both sides of the aisle.

What’s changed? Only this, as far as I can tell: Mueller is tightening the rope around the White House and well might have discovered something hinky within the Trump campaign, even though the president keeps declaring there was “no collusion.”

I don’t want to take Donald Trump’s word for it. The president’s penchant for prevarication precludes anyone from taking anything he says seriously.

I prefer to hear the final verdict from Robert Mueller.

That is, if my ears don’t catch fire and my skull doesn’t explode listening to the rants from Donald Trump’s loudmouth legal eagles.

Bannon offers spot-on comment on Sessions’s recusal

As a general rule I am not inclined to offer praise for a former Donald Trump policy adviser who has been portrayed as the Grim Reaper on “Saturday Night Live.”

However, Stephen Bannon has offered a spot-on analysis of U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions’s decision to recuse himself from anything relating to the Russia meddling matter in the 2016 presidential election.

Bannon said Sessions made precisely the correct call in backing out. He added that former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani also would have made the same decision had they been put in that position.

Why? They all had direct involvement in the president’s campaign and, thus, could not possibly be trusted to conduct a thorough, fair and unbiased investigation into Russian meddling in the campaign. The question of the moment is whether the president obstructed justice by firing FBI Director James Comey and whether his campaign “colluded” with Russian operatives who had dug up dirt on Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Yet, Trump has been trashing Sessions for making that decision. He has said repeatedly he regrets selecting him as attorney general. Trump has disparaged the leadership at the Justice Department and the FBI.

The president doesn’t understand the complexities of conflict of interest. Sessions got it when he backed out of the Russia matter. Accordingly, Bannon — someone who hasn’t generally served the nation well — happens to be totally correct in his assessment that Trump is wrong to condemn the AG for acting properly.

I do have to chuckle when Bannon keeps insisting that he still admires and respects the president, saying he cherishes his relationship with him. He offers that caveat while reminding him publicly that he doesn’t understand why he is so damn wrong when he ridicules the attorney general.

What became of America’s Mayor?

Rudolph Giuliani used to be a revered public figure. He stood tall amid the rubble of Ground Zero in lower Manhattan and rallied a stricken city in the wake of the 9/11 terror attack on the World Trade Center.

Time magazine named him Person of the Year in 2001. It was richly deserved. Giuliani became America’s Mayor.

Then something happened to him. He decided to get involved in national politics. He dressed in drag to spoof something or someone. He ran for the Republican Party presidential nomination in 2008.

Rudy Giuliani has gotten a bit strange. If you saw his shtick at the 2016 Republican National Convention, then you understand my point. If you haven’t seen it, take a look:

His latest gig is as Donald J. Trump’s lawyer, representing the president as he does battle against what he calls the “witch hunt” being conducted by special counsel Robert Mueller.

Giuliani has managed to step all over Trump’s denial about hush money being paid to a porn star; he argues now that the president cannot be subpoenaed or indicted by the special counsel, even if Mueller produces evidence that Trump broke the law.

Giuliani has become a shill. He has behaved in a seriously unattractive manner as he defends the president against Mueller’s investigation in whether Trump obstructed justice or “colluded” with Russians who interfered in our 2016 presidential election.

Honestly, I much prefer the former Rudy Giuliani, the man who faced down terrorists while standing in the rubble.

The “new Rudy” is acting like a clown.

‘No one is above the law’?

I must presume that Rudy Giuliani is a good lawyer. He once was a federal prosecutor in New York before becoming mayor of the nation’s largest city.

He’s run for president a couple of times. He’s now back in private practice, representing clients, one of whom is the president of the United States, Donald J. Trump.

Now the ex-mayor says this, that Trump can ignore a subpoena issued by special counsel Robert Mueller if it comes. Yes, the president can ignore a federal subpoena, says Giuliani.

Hold on! I thought that “no one is above the law.” Presidents of the United States are citizens of the same country as you and I — and Rudy Giuliani. Aren’t they subject to the same demands that fall on the rest of us?

Giuliani has entered the fray involving Trump and Stormy Daniels, the porn queen who alleges having a fling with Trump back in 2006. Trump denies it. Yet his personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, paid Daniels $130,000 to buy her silence about the alleged tumble — that Trump said didn’t occur.

Mueller is likely looking into it to determine if there’s possibly a campaign finance law violation.

He might summon Trump to answer questions from the grand jury.

Giuliani says the president doesn’t have to testify.

So, is the president above the law?

How do we keep the lies straight?

My head is continuing to spin on a swivel as I watch and listen to the explanations, excuses and walking back of statements regarding Donald Trump, Michael Cohen, Rudy Guiliani and Stormy Daniels.

Here is what is most confusing to me: Does a lawyer who works for his or her client do anything “on the client’s behalf” without telling the client?

I refer to that hush money payment that the lawyer, Michael Cohen, made to Stormy Daniels, the porn star who alleges having a one-night tryst with Donald Trump (Cohen’s client). Trump says he didn’t have sex with Daniels … but Cohen made the payment anyway.

Enter the former New York mayor, Giuliani, who now serves on the president’s legal team.

Trump has denied any knowledge of Cohen’s payment to Daniels to keep her quiet about the (alleged) tumble she took with Trump. Then the ex-mayor says Trump knew about it after all. Giuliani adds that Cohen made the payment without telling Trump precisely why he made it.

Huh? Do I have that essentially correct?

A lawyer worth a damn — and it’s not clear to me that Cohen fits that description — doesn’t shell out a six-figure payment to someone on the client’s behalf without telling him in the moment, if not beforehand. Isn’t that what good lawyers do?

I’m not a lawyer. That’s patently obvious. Another lawyer, though, is certainly paying careful attention to all of this. He’s a good one, too. That would be special counsel Robert Mueller, who has hired a legal team that is poring over all of the bobbing, weaving, dodging and ducking.

Stay alert, Mr. Special Counsel.

What? Rudy exposes another Trump lie?

The hits just keep on comin’, man.

Get a load of this latest offering from the man formerly known as America’s Mayor, Rudy Giuliani, who’s now taken on a new gig as Donald Trump’s lawyer tasked with negotiating a “quick” end to Robert Mueller’s investigation into “the Russia thing.”

Giuliani told Fox News’s Sean Hannity this week that Trump repaid another lawyer, Michael Cohen, who had forked over $130,000 to the porn star who allegedly had that one-night sexual tryst a dozen years ago with the man who would become president of the United States.

But … wait! Trump had said he didn’t know anything about the hush money Cohen paid to Stormy Daniels to keep her quiet about the fling she allegedly took with Trump in 2006 … which, of course, Trump has denied ever occurred.

So, where we do we stand?

Trump’s denial about Cohen’s payment to Stormy Daniels has been flushed away, apparently. Trump’s denial of the tryst is still on shaky ground, given that Cohen paid Daniels a substantial amount to shut her up about an event Trump said didn’t happen.

Does anyone think any of this is going to persuade Robert Mueller to end his probe quickly? Is this veteran lawyer and former FBI director going to call it quits on this probe just because Rudy Giuliani is on board with the rest of the Trump legal team?

I, um, think not.

How will the former America’s Mayor do this job?

I have no legal background. I spent a career writing news stories and offering commentary on issues of the day as a journalist.

There. That said, I am going to express some bafflement at Rudolf Giuliani’s decision to join Donald J. Trump’s legal team with the aim of finding a quick conclusion to a special counsel’s expansive and exhaustive examination of allegations of collusion involving the 2016 presidential election.

I stood behind the former New York mayor when he rose to the challenge of repairing his city that was shattered by the attack of 9/11.

Giuliani reportedly has plenty of shared history with Robert Mueller, the special counsel who’s been conducting the investigation. Indeed, Mueller became FBI director right before the 9/11 attack (see picture above).

But since that time, the former mayor has become a political pit bull. He is a fierce defender of Donald J. Trump, whose campaign is being examined by Mueller and his team of legal eagles.

I am having trouble understanding just how this man, Giuliani, intends to persuade Mueller to button up his examination quickly. The way I understand it, Mueller is a meticulous prosecutor, careful in the extreme to protect evidence gathered.

What’s more, Mueller already has indicted some individuals close to the president’s campaign. There appears to be much more ground to plow before he brings this probe to an end.

As Politico reports: Mueller likely still has much work to do. At a minimum, he must see through his case against former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, who has pleaded not guilty to charges including bank and tax fraud and is set to face trial starting in July.

So, the question remains: How is the man once called “America’s Mayor” going to push Mueller to conclude at least portions of this investigation in a speedy fashion?

This layman out here in Flyover Country doesn’t see any way in the world that will happen. Robert Mueller will conclude this investigation at his own pace … if he’s given the chance to complete his work.