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Pick your battles carefully
Posted by: McQ on Sunday, November 04, 2007

Greg Sargent has a piece about Rudy G. going after Joe Biden on Wolf Blitzer's show:
It seems pretty clear cut. In the first interview, Rudy was asked explicitly about Joe Biden and foreign policy experience and he suggested very directly that Biden didn't have any, summarizing Biden's record thusly:
"It's one thing to speak about what you want or even pass laws about it. It's another thing to actually do it. Foreign policy experience to me means being an ambassador, being in the state department."
Unless I'm missing something, Rudy explicitly used the words "foreign policy experience." But then Rudy was later confronted about his contention that Biden Senate Foreign Relations Committee chair Biden lacks said experience. And he responded that he hadn't attacked Biden this way at all. "I didn't mention foreign policy." Rudy said. Of course, Rudy did in fact "mention foreign policy."

Wolf Blitzer did fact-check Rudy here, but he also kind of laughed off Rudy's mendacity — yet another reminder that many in the media elite still see Rudy as someone who hit the political jackpot on 9/11 but who is fundamentally unthreatening and is a kind of harmless buffoon.
Joe Biden is an "also ran" among presidential candidates. He hasn't a chance in Hades of gaining the nomination. But he is having a ball attacking Rudy. Rudy, for some reason, just can't seem to let things like that pass. Now don't get me wrong, there are certain attacks from anyone that you have to answer. But there are ways to answer them that don't end up putting a candidate in a hole of his own making.

Note what Rudy did here. He ended up looking a bit foolish (Biden heads the Senate Foreign Relations Committee) and he also managed to define foreign policy experience in a way that he can now be said to have none himself.

Sometimes it's better to ignore people like Biden who few are listening too anyway and to formulate an answer to questions like that which put a positive light on whatever experience you have (yes, that's called spin, but we are talking about presidential candidates here) vs. ending up shooting yourself in the foot as Giuliani has in this case.
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Previous Comments to this Post 

He’s talking about Dodd who has gone nuts with Peace Corps and the State Department.
Written By: FD
URL: http://
Guiliani is far from the best candidate to beat Hillary. I don’t know why people think he is.
Written By: jpm100
URL: http://
Giuliani is not a conservative. He’s certainly not a libertarian. It’s not even clear that he’s a Republican. He is, essentially, sui generis, and his time and place as mayor of New York City, while admirable and remarkable, has come and gone.

He will not be President of the United States, and he should not be.

Trying to make him the lesser of two evils vis a vis Hillary Clinton entirely misses the point of what it takes to defeat her and Clintonism. You need someone who is opposed to her, not someone who is merely complementary to her.
Written By: Martin McPhillips

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