I wanna marry you, said Judi, to Rudy when they met

(Note: to avoid any misunderstanding, the above title is figurative and mythical, not literal. It’s also a distant paraphrase of a line in a Bob Dylan song, a song which is itself a mythical treatment of a real person.)

Interviewed by the New York Times (“Drawing Fire, Judith Giuliani Gives Her Side”), Rudolph Giuliani’s third wife, who wants to be America’s First Lady, seeks to correct some false beliefs about the beginning of her relationship with her third husband:

Judith Nathan became a part of Mr. Giuliani’s life in 1999, not long before his prostate cancer was diagnosed. The circumstances of their meeting have been the subject of much contention, with some critics suggesting that she aggressively pursued him at a time when he was New York City’s mayor and still living in Gracie Mansion with Ms. Hanover and their children.

Until now, the Giulianis have declined to discuss the matter, calling it “a romantic secret.” But in the interviews, the couple provided their version of their introduction, saying that they met at Club Macanudo, a cigar bar on East 63rd Street, in May 1999.

They said they were introduced by Dr. Burt Meyers, a specialist in infectious diseases at Mount Sinai Hospital who was there with Mrs. Nathan and had met Mr. Giuliani when his mother was a patient there.

After chatting for an hour, mostly about her work in the pharmaceutical industry, Mr. Giuliani asked for her phone number, they said. “She gave me a piece of paper to write it on,” he recalled. “One of our other romantic little secrets is I’ve kept it all these years in my wallet.”

After they began dating, Mrs. Giuliani had plans to fly to Hawaii on a vacation awarded to leading sales managers by her employer.

“He said, ‘Please don’t go,’ ” she recalled. ” ‘You’ve already become too important to me.’ “

Mrs. Giuliani declined to comment when asked how she felt about dating a married man, or the complications involved in seeing him secretly.

Mr. Giuliani said: “I don’t discuss that in detail except to say that, you know, we love each other very much, and we have both found the person that we adore and can live with the rest of our lives. It didn’t happen for either of us young in life.”

A female reader writes:

She made herself available to a married man. I guess that’s ok by today’s standards? Some would still call that a homewrecker. And what hypocrites saying it was a romantic secret. The reason they didn’t want to reveal it is that it is obvious he was still married, not necessarily looking for a new mate, perhaps even as Donna said, kind of continuing with the marriage, and then Judith comes along to turn his head and date him while he’s still married. She IS a homewrecker!

The Times article continues:

Although Mrs. Giuliani’s friends say the coverage has been painful, the Giuliani’s tried to brush off the difficulties. “I don’t want to sit in on cabinet meetings,” Mrs. Giuliani said. “He offered me that because he loves me. You know, he says he respects my intelligence.”

The reader comments:

His chief reason for running, to make her First Lady.

LA replies:

Are you saying that seriously?

Reader replies:

Semi-seriously, he was willing to shame his wife and children and throw them out of the mansion so that she could come in and have pleasure of being First Lady of the City. I can’t imagine any other public servant willing to bring that much ugliness into the public eye so needlessly, and actively to hurt and harm his children, for so relatively trivial a reason. That makes me think he would do anything to please her. Although it’s odd, these signs, reported in the Vanity Fair article, that he’s a little annoyed with her. Could it be that now that there is real scrutiny and criticism (unlike when she became a diva with his money and influence, making everybody toady up to her), and others are seeing her more critically, the honeymoon ga-ga glow is wearing off?

The reader continues:

Wow, I read the whole Vanity Fair article, quite devastating. I’d forgotten that Andrew was his father’s best man, maybe trying at that point to get a fresh start? But I really hope Republicans wake up. Even apart from my female cattiness and not wanting to see this homewrecking bitch as First Lady, it really would be bad news for conservatism. How could this man ever represent family issues for the nation? Even just being a good father, which some divorced men manage to be, even that he couldn’t claim, and when our culture is suffering from fatherlessness. Oh brother, the Weekly Standard had better get the Giuliani bit out of its mouth.

John D. writes:

I just watched a segment on Fox News that had 30 prospective Iowan Republican voters that were responding to a series of questions regarding potential candidates, asked by the commentators. One of the questions was something like:

Does it make a difference to you that Rudy Giuliani had several extra-marital affairs while he held the mayoral office in NYC?

A grand total of two people raised their hands. What does this say for the general integrity of the Republican voting population, which seems to be unwilling to hold the perspective candidates accountable for their personal character? My, how we have lost our way.

LA replies:

And this is the terrible damage that not only a Giuliani presidency but even the Giuliani candidacy does and will do. It normalizes, at the highest level of our land, scandalous personal behavior. People take their promptings of what’s acceptable and unacceptable from the surrounding society. If the society says, here’s a man running for president and he’s a top contender, people will tend to accept that person as a top contender. Then, when presented with negative facts about him, they will tend to accept them, since the society has already told them that this is a man who is suited for the presidency.

The point is that Giuliani, with his messed up private life (with his children not even talking to him) should not even be running for president. There should have been unanimous voice from Republicans that he was not suited to the office, and that would have stopped it. However, Republican grass roots people are also responsible for this. It was largely their own support for Giuliani that made him a contender. However, that was before many of them knew much about his history.

The reader repies:

Good. I think I figured out what Rush means when he says the Dragon Lady has an 80 percent chance of being the next president. It’s a coded way of saying he’s not crazy about present front runner Giuliani, he can see that he is a liberal not a conservative candidate, that the liberal Republicans, including the Weekly Standard crowd, of whom Rush is not particularly fond, are having a ball saying goodbye to social conservatism and pushing Rudy, and he knows that a lot of conservatives will not be able to support him, even if some have said nothing about him bothers them, and that this will deprive him of some of the natural Republican base, and in an election where Dems already hold the edge and a lot of the country is fed up with Bush, it makes Dem opponent more likely to succeed.

Also, I think some people would be ashamed to raise their hands and admit that a marital history like Giuliani’s would be a disqualification for them. That would not be broad-minded. It would look, uh, judgmental, and you know how that’s worse than murder.

Stephen R. writes:

RE: “It normalizes, at the highest level of our land, scandalous personal behavior.”

I just wanted to underscore that point by having recently been made aware of just how pervasive oral sex in high school and junior high school became after President Clinton engaged in that behavior (and deemed that it wasn’t sex).

It seems very likely that infidelity, under President Rudy could see similar rates of increase.

LA replies:
A president has a large impact on the spirit of his time. I’m not talking about his policies, but his personality, his ideas. Under priapic Clinton, the country consciously and explicitly subscribed to immorality. Under mindless Bush, many people have become either mindless Bush cheerleaders or mindless Bush haters.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at August 05, 2007 03:08 PM | Send

Email entry

Email this entry to:

Your email address:

Message (optional):