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Fight, Fight Fight

It's on!

Romney and Giuliani just took public their behind-the-scenes scuffle over their own records on taxes and spending.

The brouhaha began innocently as Giuliani took a pass on drawing harsh distinctions between himself and Romney. Refusing to name his opponent, Giuliani pointed to his record as mayor of New York City as evidence of his credentials. "I cut taxes 23 times. I believe in tax cuts....it's something I believe in from results."

Romney took the fight to Giuliani on the line-item veto and the commuter tax -- two issues his campaign has made much hay of in recent days. Romney described Giuliani's opposition to the line-item veto as a "mistake" and called him out on his record.

Giuliani was up to the fight. He detailed how spending went up eight percent during Romney's time as governor while it dropped seven percent in New York City during his own tenure. "I led, he lagged," Giuliani said in a nice, preprogrammed line (I assume). As for the line-item veto, Giuliani cast it as fight against President Bill Clinton. "I don't think it's bad to have a Republican nominee who has actually beaten President Clinton at something," he said to loud applause.

A good exchange. And -- at least in the short term -- a rhetorical victory for Giuliani.

By Chris Cillizza  |  October 9, 2007; 4:40 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: McCain: Serious, Somber Straight Talk

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