Friday, September 28, 2007

Former LA Mayor Backs Giuliani

Former LA Mayor Backs Giuliani
By ROBERT JABLON – 4 hours ago

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan endorsed Rudy Giuliani for president Friday, then suggested the one-time New York mayor is too liberal for conservative voters in the California primary.

Riordan, a moderate Republican who was elected to two terms as Los Angeles mayor, spoke as Giuliani campaigned in the city and visited Riordan's famed restaurant, The Pantry.
"Rudy Giuliani is too liberal for the solid, right-wing Republicans in California, that part of the party," Riordan said. "But I do believe, when it comes to the presidency and the national election, these people may put that apart and look at him as the type of leader our country needs."

Riordan said some conservative voters "are going to have litmus tests on everything from gun control to abortion to other things. He's going to be hurt there."
The key for Giuliani, according to Riordan, is to emphasize how his experience as New York mayor would make him a good president.

"He did a fabulous job running New York City and of course in 9-11 he showed that he has the feel of a great leader," Riordan said.

During a campaign stop, Giuliani faced questions as to why he skipped a debate Thursday focused on minority issues. He said that he would like to do away with all planned debates and focus on fundraising because the Democrats are doing better.

"I get invitations to a dozen debates" and cannot make all of them, Giuliani said.
The top four Republican presidential candidates — Giuliani, Fred Thompson, John McCain and Mitt Romney — cited scheduling conflicts in declining to attend the debate.
Other GOP candidates criticized the decision, with Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback calling it "a disgrace to our country."

Giuliani said he attended events that had been planned weeks and months in advance. He also said he would rather not take part in any debates to focus on raising funds to fight the Democratic presidential contender next year.

"Their fundraising has been phenomenal. And ours has been good, compared on prior models, but we still haven't stepped up to the kind of fundraising they're doing," Giuliani said.
Combined, Democrats Barack Obama and Hillary Rodham Clinton have raised more than $100 million. Giuliani has raised more than $33 million, with the third-quarter fundraising deadline ending Sunday.