Back to Basics in the War on Terror
I think Allah has hit on something very powerful, and something I've thought about myself these last few months: electing Rudy would take us back to those early days of resolve in the War on Terror, without the Iraq baggage. He would still finish the job in Iraq, but his leadership is a living, breathing reminder of why we are at war with terrorists in the first place. Bush may have trouble communicating a war on terror message of that because of Iraq. Rudy wouldn't.
Enter Rudy, the un-Republican. A new Rasmussen survey puts him three points left of center, leaving him perfectly positioned to snatch the middle in the general election but in deep trouble in the primary — until you factor in Iraq Syndrome, that is. Giuliani has two major advantages over the rest of the field: (1) he’s renowned for his managerial skills, a characteristic the electorate will be starving for in its next president, and (2) because he has no political record over the past five years, he remains identified in the national consciousness with 9/11. Put those two together and it adds up to a do-over on the war on terror: electing Rudy gets us back to where it all began, with an executive who’s just as serious as Bush about the threat but, unlike Bush, whose abilities damn near everyone has the utmost confidence in. Granted, he’ll have to distance himself a bit from his support for Iraq, but the GOP nominee is going to be an Iraq-war-supporter whoever he (or she) may be. In fact, Giuliani’s steadfastness on the war might actually help him overcome his liabilities among the base on social issues. He’s a one-issue politician; McCain has to juggle immigration and campaign finance reform, but Giuliani’s candidacy — and I’m sure it’ll be sold this way — is essentially a referendum on America’s commitment to the war on terror. A vote for Rudy is a vote against Iraq Syndrome.