November 4, 2008

Religion and Politics ’08: Rudolph Giuliani

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Background

Hometown
New York, N.Y.

Age
65

Religion
Roman Catholic

Education
New York University School of Law, J.D., 1968
Manhattan College, B.A., 1965

Candidate Website
www.joinrudy2008.com

Candidacy Status
Filed “statement of candidacy” in February 2007.
Formally withdrew candidacy Jan. 30, 2008.
Endorsed John McCain Jan. 30, 2008.

Political Experience
Mayor, New York City, 1994-2001
U.S. Attorney, 1981-1989

Professional Experience
Partner, Bracewell & Giuliani, LLP, 2005-present
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Giuliani Partners, LLC, 2002-present

Family Information
Spouse: Judith Nathan
Children: Andrew Giuliani, Caroline Giuliani

Religious Biography

In His Own Words

“The [Catholic] church has built the road that allows my intellect to traverse to the outer reaches of what is comprehensible and, at that point, the church offers a leap of faith to carry me where my intellect cannot go. For me, being a Catholic is not limiting but liberating.” (New York Times, April 21, 1994)

Giuliani, the grandson of Italian immigrants, was raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., as a Roman Catholic. As a young man, he considered the priesthood but decided to pursue a legal career. In 1982, Giuliani had his 14-year marriage to Regina Peruggi annulled by the Catholic Church, claiming he had learned the two were second cousins and that therefore the marriage was never valid in the eyes of the church. In 2000, Giuliani declined to answer questions about his church attendance, calling it a personal matter.

Four months into his tenure as New York City’s mayor, Giuliani gave a major speech on religion and politics. He called for tolerance of people’s right to express religious views and discussed how Catholicism has allowed him to wrestle with life’s big questions. “For me,” Giuliani said, “being a Catholic is not limiting but liberating.” In 1999, Giuliani threatened the Brooklyn Museum with the loss of city funding if it did not remove several works, including a depiction of the Virgin Mary that Giuliani and others called “anti-Catholic.”

If nominated, Giuliani would be the fourth Roman Catholic to win a presidential nomination and the first Catholic Republican to do so. If elected, he would be the second Catholic president, following John F. Kennedy.

On The Issues

Abortion Giuliani says he “hates” abortion, but adds, “I believe in a woman’s right to choose.” In a May 2007 debate, he said it would be “OK” if Roe v. Wade were overturned and “OK” if not, but laterclarified his stance, calling a woman’s right to choose one of his “core beliefs.” In October 2007, Giuliani pledged to find new ways to support organizations that promote alternatives to abortion. As mayor of New York City, Giuliani approved government funding for abortion and opposed a ban on partial-birth abortion, saying he wanted to “preserve the option for women.” He also donatedmoney to Planned Parenthood, a group that advocates for abortion rights. Prior to his first campaign for mayor in 1989, however, Giuliani opposed abortion rights. Compare McCain and Obama

Church and State As mayor, Giuliani emphasized that believers and atheists alike must tolerate each others’ views. During his 2000 senate campaign against Hillary Clinton, Giuliani said the Ten Commandments are ”part of Western civilization,” and ”if teachers want to emphasize what is in it and talk about it, there shouldn’t be some kind of inquisition that they can’t do that.” Compare McCain and Obama
Death Penalty Giuliani favors the death penalty and has advocated for capital punishment for those who commit treason against the United States. He testified in convicted terrorist Zacarias Moussaoui’s death penalty trial and urged prosecutors to pursue the death penalty against American Taliban fighter John Walker Lindh. Giuliani has said the death penalty is “justified and [an] effective deterrent for other people doing the same thing.” Compare McCain and Obama
Education As mayor, Giuliani advocated a school voucher program that would use tax dollars to send students to private schools, including religious schools. At the Values Voter Summit in October 2007, Giuliani said that he favors “school choice.” He opposes prayer in schools, but defended a teacher fired for praying with students, saying she should have been given another chance. Compare McCain and Obama
Environment Giuliani says he believes that global warming is taking place. He says, “The big question has always been how much of it is happening because of natural climate changes and how much of it is happening because of human intervention.” He has called debate over climate change “almost unnecessary … because we should be dealing with pollution anyway.” Giuliani supports expanded nuclear power development, alternative energy sources and American energy independence. Compare McCain and Obama
Faith-Based Initiatives During a speech at the Values Voter Summit in October 2007, Giuliani pledged to work with the White House Office of Faith-Based Initiatives to support organizations that promote alternatives to abortion. He also cited his work with faith-based organizations as mayor of New York. Previously, the campaign had declined to take a position on faith-based initiatives. Compare McCain and Obama
Gay Marriage Giuliani opposes gay marriage and has stated that “marriage should be between a man and a woman.” He does not, however, support a federal amendment banning gay marriage. As mayor, he signed legislation recognizing domestic partnerships, marched in gay pride parades, actively supported gay rights and temporarily lived with a gay couple during his divorce. Compare McCain and Obama
Health Care In August 2007, Giuliani outlined a health care plan that would move away from the current model of employer-provided health care by providing tax exemptions to families or individuals who buy their own insurance. He says that the resulting competition among insurance agencies would drive down the price of health coverage. Generally, Giuliani advocates expanding access to health insurance through “free market principles” and has criticized proposals for universal health care, saying that “socialization” is not the solution. As mayor, he implemented a program called HealthStat, which identified and enrolled uninsured children in health insurance programs. Compare McCain and Obama
Immigration Giuliani supports comprehensive immigration reform that includes a process to “regularize” undocumented immigrants, but insists that he does not believe in amnesty. He also says reforms should strengthen border security and require immigrants to learn English. As mayor, heemphasized the positive contributions of immigrants and called federal immigration laws “harsh and unfair.” He also barred New York City employees from reporting illegal immigrants seeking government assistance. Giuliani criticized a New York state proposal to allow immigrants to obtain driver’s licenses. Compare McCain and Obama
Iraq War Giuliani supported President Bush’s January 2007 decision to increase troops and has said pulling the U.S. military out of Iraq would be a “terrible mistake.” He advocates keeping American forces in Iraq for as long as it takes to stabilize the country, but says, “I am not confident it’s all going to turn around.” Compare McCain and Obama
Poverty Giuliani advocates requiring welfare recipients to work or engage in job training to receive benefits. New York City’s welfare rolls were cut by more than half while Giuliani was mayor, and he touts his overhaul of the city’s welfare system as one of his major successes. During his 2000 senate campaign, Giuliani indicated that he would support an increase in the minimum wage if studies showed it would not reduce the number of available jobs. Compare McCain and Obama
Stem Cell Research Giuliani supports loosening restrictions on federal funding of embryonic stem cell research and generally broadening such research. Compare McCain and Obama