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Giuliani Fills Out National Staff

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani (R) continues to add political talent to his inner circle in expectation of a 2008 presidential bid. The newest members of Team Hizzoner are Katie Levinson and Maria Comella.

Levinson will serve as a senior adviser to Giuliani and will be tasked with setting up his national communications operation. Comella will coordinate the campaign's regional media operations, including in the key early states of Iowa and New Hampshire.

Anthony Carbonetti, a longtime Giuliani confidant, said Levinson's work for Schwarzenegger is "proof of her experience, talent and incredible abilities."

Levinson comes to Giuliani fresh off a stint as communications director for Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's (R-Calif.) winning reelection campaign, which drew wide praise in the political world. (Her boss in that race -- campaign manager Steve Schmidt -- has signed on as an adviser to Arizona Sen. John McCain's presidential campaign.)

Comella was communications director for Rep. Jim Nussle's unsuccessful campaign for governor last year.

Both operatives have roots in Bush world: Levinson was Director of Television at the White House prior to joining the Schwarzenegger campaign, while Comella served as New Hampshire communications director for Bush-Cheney 2004.

Levinson and Comella join former Republican National Committee political director Mike Duhaime in the Giuliani camp. Giuliani is interviewing for a number of other top-level positions, and one informed source familiar with the process suggested more hirings will be announced next week.

The news about Comella and Levinson is the latest sign that Giuliani is more likely than not to run for president in 2008. Although polling continues to show him at or near the top of the primary field, many within the party believe that his liberal social views on abortion and gay rights ensure that his candidacy will be a non-starter among conservative activists in places like Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina.

Make sure to check The Fix tomorrow morning to see where Giuliani ranks in the latest look at the 2008 field.

By Chris Cillizza  |  January 4, 2007; 4:52 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
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Next: The Line: 2008 Begins Now


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Posted by: [3!]zv40 | January 18, 2007 11:07 PM | Report abuse

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Posted by: [3!]realit | January 16, 2007 1:12 PM | Report abuse

"Guilliani is bought by corporate interests just as much as McCain is. Why do middle class people constantly vote against their own self interest?" So what politician is not "bought" - don't they all get money from somewhere? And how exactly are corporations anti-middle class? he asks while sipping his Starbucks, blogging with IE on a Dell laptop after a short commute in his Saturn that included a stop to fill up the gas tank.

Posted by: Dave! | January 8, 2007 10:45 AM | Report abuse

After the latest comments watch Mr. Cillizza changing the subject by starting a new issue, it is always the same with him, it is sad.

Posted by: che | January 5, 2007 4:55 AM | Report abuse

Dear JWH,

For uncensored news please bookmark:

Holy Joe Lieberman the hypocrite: the pro-wrestling edition

Looks like it's time to pull out on of my favorite lines...


It has become a holiday ritual: Joe Lieberman and family-research officials hold a well-attended press conference to decry the impact on children of excessive video game sex and violence.

And, again in 2006, Lieberman indulged in another yearly ritual: taking campaign money from the entertainment industry.

An analysis by the Center for Responsive Politics, a nonpartisan watchdog group, found that the Connecticut Democrat, who won re-election last month as an independent, received about $73,000 from a variety of industry sources over the past two years.

For the rest of this article please go to:

Posted by: che | January 5, 2007 4:52 AM | Report abuse

This man was at the centre of the 9-11 2001 coverup and should therefor never become president of the u.s., he should be prosecuted and locked away for live.

Posted by: jwh | January 5, 2007 3:30 AM | Report abuse

Dear Ellen,

Because Mr. Cillizza also forms part of the corporate interests,in the event that he would write something against the system, he will be fired by the Washington Post.

It is quite simple.

For uncensored news please bookmark:

Posted by: Che | January 5, 2007 3:11 AM | Report abuse

Bow down all, before KOZ-- because he knows all, he is one with all, he is, in fact, one with the great nothingness, which consists mostly of vapor.

Posted by: Anonymous | January 4, 2007 9:31 PM | Report abuse

Still can't see Guiliani topping CC's top 5, particularly after the SWOT analysis went missing. Surely name recognition won't decide the next president? Then again, how did Bush become the front runner for Repubs in 2000...

Guiliani could win, if the Repub base is split between the 'born again as a conservative' Romney, old favourite Gingrich, and Brownback and Huckabee. If one of them (Huckabee surely has the best shot) starts to consolidate from the rest, Guiliani will struggle.

His ceiling is probably 35%, once his social history is known. Requires a fractured group to win with 35%, but it is possible.

Posted by: JayPe | January 4, 2007 7:52 PM | Report abuse

Guilliani is bought by corporate interests just as much as McCain is. Why do middle class people constantly vote against their own self interest?

Posted by: Ellen | January 4, 2007 6:59 PM | Report abuse

America's Mayor has made some crafty choices.

For one, Arnold Schwarzenegger's winning reelection campaign was a thing of beauty. The decisions were so well orchestrated, from the choice of imagery, to the recentering of the debate after the governor's less than auspicious previous year.

Giuliani has the ability to go all the way to the White House, and I don't put much stock in the chatter about his inability to please the base. The base is pragmatic. The base is also wary of McCain, and Romney, while he has changed recently, to many eyes, still has hurdles of a Giuliani-esque nature to overcome, and, added to that, no matter how big a deal the Massachusetts governor is to insiders, the man still poles at something like 5 percent, Mike Huckabee levels, while Giuliani often leads, followed closely by McCain.

Posted by: Charles Coulter - Los Angeles | January 4, 2007 5:57 PM | Report abuse

For uncensored news please bookmark:

Giuliani prepares US presidential bid--a new phase in 9/11 mythmaking
By Bill Van Auken
18 November 2006

Use this version to print | Send this link by email | Email the author

With this week's announcement that Rudolph Giuliani has formed an exploratory committee--the first step in making a run for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination--the mythmaking surrounding New York City's former Republican mayor is entering a new phase.

New York's tabloids gave the founding of the "Rudolph Giuliani Presidential Exploratory Committee Inc." banner headline treatment, while a number of political analysts treated the move as a groundbreaking event in the long slog to the 2008 election.

In the wake of the Republican debacle at the polls in this year's midterm contests, Giuliani is being sold to the public as the party's potential savior.

He is being promoted as a "moderate" Republican alternative to the politics of Bush and Co., ideally positioned to appeal to the "centrist" and "independent" voters whose crossover is credited by media pundits for this year's Democratic sweep. Some have opined that the defeat dealt to Bush--as well as to a virtually every candidate for whom Giuliani personally campaigned in the run-up to November 7--has somehow strengthened the political position of New York's ex-mayor.

Like most of what passes for political analysis in the American media, the attempt to cast Giuliani as a "moderate" alternative is both shallow and grossly misleading.

It is based almost exclusively on statements he made while running for mayor of New York in support of abortion and gay rights, the two key "social issues" that Republicans have flogged in order to mobilize their base within the Christian right.

Any close examination of his record demonstrates, however, that on fundamental questions of militarism, democratic rights and social equality, Giuliani is among the most right-wing political figures in America today.

As mayor, Giuliani was despised for his provocative defense of flagrant police killings of innocent victims such as Amadou Diallo and Patrick Dorismond, the byproduct of relentless "quality of life" and "zero tolerance" law enforcement that rode roughshod over the democratic rights of the city's working class and minority residents. In the Dorismond case, he brought public life in the city to an all-time nadir by illegally unsealing and publicizing the victim's juvenile record of a nonviolent offense to "prove" that the 26-year-old got what he deserved when an undercover cop shot him dead on a Manhattan street corner.

Presiding over City Hall during the most explosive Wall Street boom in US history, Giuliani pursued policies that served to transfer wealth from the poorest sections of New York's population to the richest, forcing nearly a quarter of a million people--in their overwhelming majority women and children--off welfare and into even deeper poverty.

During the same period, he expanded the city's corporate welfare initiatives, handing out generous tax breaks and concessions packages to Wall Street firms and major corporations headquartered in New York.

He also sought to whip up religious backwardness and curry favor with the Republican right by staging bizarre and malicious confrontations over art that he deemed anti-religious or offensive, cutting off funds at one point to the Brooklyn Museum over an exhibition. The episode had more than a whiff of fascism, echoing the kind of campaign waged by the Nazis against "degenerate art."

For the rest of this article please go to:

Posted by: che | January 4, 2007 5:32 PM | Report abuse

What a disappointment it would be, if the Republicans were to nominate Giuliani. Eight years of an untrustworthy president has been more than enough. Can't we do better?

Posted by: bsimon | January 4, 2007 5:11 PM | Report abuse

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