Not Endorsed and Proud of It
Updated 11:16 a.m.
By Michael D. Shear and Juliet Eilperin
MIAMI -- The New York Times may have braced themselves for an angry response from Rudy Giuliani when they trashed him in their endorsement of rival Republican John McCain, calling the former New York mayor "a narrow, obsessively secretive, vindictive man."
But they may not have anticipated that the first campaign to email news of the endorsement to national reporters Thursday night would be... the Giuiani campaign.
In an e-mail entitled "ICYMI: The Gray Lady Endorses John McCain," Giuliani spokeswoman Maria Comella provided reporters with the direct link to the New York Times website.
A few minutes later, during the MSNBC debate, Giuliani himself explained how he considers the Times endorsement a badge of honor, saying that "I probably never did anything the New York Times suggested I do in eight years as mayor of New York City. And if I did, I wouldn't be considered a conservative Republican."
McCain told reporters this morning that he appreciated the Times' endorsement, on the grounds that it means the paper's editorial board believes "I can serve best as president of the United States."
But he took pains to point out, "I appreciate anyone's endorsement. Because I receive their endorsement does not mean I necessarily share their views."
McCain noted that he also received the endorsement of Mitt Romney's hometown papers, The Boston Globe and The Boston Herald. "They know him best," he said.
When asked by The Trail whether it was fair to point out that by that reasoning, The New York Times knows Giuliani best, McCain simply replied, "I don't know."
Some of the other GOP candidates didn't come off well either.
Of former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney, the paper says: "It is impossible to figure out where he stands or where he would lead the country." It concludes that former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee's "insertion of religion into the race, herding Mr. Romney into a defense of his beliefs, disqualified him for the Oval Office."
Still, it boggles the mind that Giuliani's team was actually promoting the editorial, given the vitriol: "Mr. Giuliani's arrogance and bad judgment are breathtaking," the paper wrote. "The Rudolph Giuliani of 2008 first shamelessly turned the horror of 9/11 into a lucrative business, with a secret client list, then exploited his city's and the country's nightmare to promote his presidential campaign."
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