Rudy Calls Out McCain and Romney on Bush Tax Cuts
ABC News’ Jan Simmonds reports: At the mega Florida retirement community, The Villages, today, Rudy Giuliani did something he has shied away from this entire campaign. He called out his fellow Republicans John McCain and Mitt Romney, by name, for failing to support the Bush tax cuts.
“I supported the Bush tax cuts,” said Giuliani. “John McCain voted with the Democrats against the tax cuts twice. And Mitt Romney did not clearly support the Bush tax cuts. Now, I clearly supported the Bush tax cuts for a very simple reason -- because I had done the same thing several years earlier. I had done the same thing in New York. I knew it would work. I knew it would work to grow our economy.”
While not using the harshest of language, Giuliani has been vigilant in his efforts to not go after his fellow Republicans unless they went after him first. He told ABC News' George Stephanopoulos in December that, as a rule, he does not "criticize" fellow Republicans.
"I try to follow the rule, if you attack me, or attack my record, and then I have to explain it. And in the nature of explaining it, [if] I have to point out that your record was weaker in that area than mine, then I will do it," Giuliani said.
"But if you don’t attack me, I have no right to attack you. I mean, there’s no point in that."
This change is a significant one, since Giuliani and his campaign now appear ready to put the gloves on and get into the fight.
Asked at a press avail following The Villages rally, Giuliani acted as if the change in rhetoric was not a big deal.
“I just pointed out where there were differences,” he said, repeating the lines he gave during the rally, adding that Romney was “equivocal in his support.”
In recent weeks, Giuliani has been an afterthought in the minds of most Americans, sitting on the sidelines while his competitors battled it out in Michigan, South Carolina and Nevada.
But starting tomorrow, all eyes will fall upon the Sunshine State, and after being camped out in Florida since the New Hampshire primary on Jan. 8, the Giuliani campaign feels that the extra time they have devoted on the ground, combined with what they tout as their organizational strength, will pave the way for a victory on Jan. 29.
If the Giuliani strategy works, the single win in Florida would leapfrog the former New York City mayor to the top of the Republican delegate count.