Thatcherites Sign on With Giuliani
Former New York mayor Rudolph Giuliani skipped across the Pond yesterday, and is spending a whirlwind day of diplomacy, fundraising and schmoozing with the Brits.
At 10 a.m. London time, Giuliani met with former prime minister Tony Blair, followed by a stop at 10 Downing Street for a sit-down with Blair's successor, Gordon Brown. Both meetings are part of a concerted effort to show that Giuliani's 9-11 leadership goes beyond America's borders.
To that end, his campaign also is announcing today that two of former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher's advisers will be joining Giuliani's foreign policy team.
Robert Conquest and Nile Gardiner, both advisers to Thatcher, will help counsel the former mayor, aides said. The appointments will be announced today in a statement.
Giuliani's three-day jaunt to London comes as the presidential candidates wind down fundraising before the end of the third quarter. But the former mayor is not taking a break from the money chase.
Over lunch at the Manderin Oriental Hotel, Giuliani will be gathering cash from Americans living oversees at an event hosted by Winston Churchill's great grand-daughter, aides said.
Giuliani frequently refers to Churchill as the model of an inspirational leader (and mentions that he turned to his writings on Sept. 12, the day after the terrorist attacks in 2001.)
"I thought about the people of London enduring relentless bombing and continuing to lead their lives," Giuliani wrote in his own book. "I fell asleep at around 4:30. I woke less than an hour later and waited for the sun to come up: I wasn't sure it would. When first I saw it rise I was relieved. Now it was our turn to fight back."
Tonight, Giuliani will be honored by Thatcher herself, receiving the first-ever Margaret Thatcher Medal of Freedom. Aides said it is being awarded for his leadership after the attacks.
Giuliani's London trip is by no means a first for the former mayor, who became a globe-trotting speechmaker in the years after he left office in New York City.
In 2006, he traveled to Dubai, Buenos Aires, New Dehli, Edmonton, Riga, records show. An experienced traveler, no doubt.
But this week's trip may never have happened, it appears. Giuliani blamed his late arrival at a Florida speech earlier this week on paperwork needed to get his passport renewed.
His passport expired?
"I would hope the fact that the mayor is meeting with the current and former prime minister at 10 Downing Street would hold more weight than the fact that he had to fill out some paperwork for his passport," spokeswoman Maria Comella said.
--Michael D. Shear
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