“Exactly 36 hours after he first rushed to the World Trade Center, the Rudy Giuliani’s neo-Churchillian reputation was already secure,” writes Newsweek’s Jonathan Alter. Rudy Giuliani was a guest on the Hardball College tourHardball College Tour last Oct. 30.
“He had just escaped injury or death in The Attack, calmly led a terrifying retreat uptown, then inhabited the role of wartime leader with a fine mixture of brisk compassion and gritty command presence.”
On the College Tour on Oct. 30th, the former New York City mayor goes one-on-one with Chris Matthews to talk about America post-9/11, his opinions on the Showdown with Saddam, his thoughts on “Leadership” (the title of his new book), and his new assignment in Mexico City.
Wednesday October 30th, 9 pm ET from University of Pennsylvania exclusive on America’s Newschannel, MSNBC.
Giuliani’s biography as ‘Time 2001 Person of the Year’
To get news on the Hardball College tour delivered straight to your inbox, subscribe to The Hardball Briefing. Click here to subscribe.
READ THE TRANSCRIPT TO THE SHOW
CHRIS MATTHEWS, HOST: I’m Chris Matthews at the University of Pennsylvania in my hometown of Philadelphia. Tonight for a full hour, the hero who led this country through one of its darkest hours, former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani.
MATTHEWS: I’m Chris Matthews. Let’s play HARDBALL.
MATTHEWS: It’s a great honor to have you.
RUDY GIULIANI, FMR. NEW YORK CITY MAYOR: Nice to be here.
MATTHEWS: But I must point out, in addition to being a hero and “TIME” Magazine’s Man of the Year, I just happened to notice “The New York Times” bestseller’s list, and where are you on that list now?
GIULIANI: No. 1.
MATTHEWS: “Leadership”, name of the book, we’re going to talk about that tonight at length with a man who knows all about leadership, who may well be president some day. I want to talk to you about the haunting of Washington and our area of the country the last three or four weeks.
They’ve caught the guys, it looks like. What do we do with them?
GIULIANI: I think you put them on trial and, assuming all the proof is there and you meet the standard, certainly the death penalty should be considered for both of them. I think ultimately you have to have a jury and a judge decide that. But certainly that should be an ingredient of the case.
MATTHEWS: You said you’d like to pull the switch for Osama bin Laden.
Do you want to be available this time?
GIULIANI: No, that was a very special situation, and it was a very emotional statement that came-I said that on September 14 of 2001.
MATTHEWS: When the president arrived that day.
GIULIANI: When President Bush-actually Governor Pataki and I went to meet President Bush...
GIULIANI: ... at an Air Force base in New Jersey to bring him into New York, and he asked me, after asking the governor and I some questions, he asked me how am I doing, or what could he do for me and I said if you ever catch him, I would like to be the one...
GIULIANI: ... to execute him because I think I’m the most appropriate one because he killed so many of my people. And it was an emotional statement and an angry statement, but, you know, I still feel that way, but that’s the one situation in which I would, you know, feel that way.
MATTHEWS: Let’s talk about leadership. You were in New York, you were around the country on your book tour and at the time of the last few weeks, we in Washington were facing an unusual situation. You go to a gas station, and you check around the hall 360 degrees to see if anybody is in a white truck around you. It turns out it was a different colored truck and different color guys.
But they were profiling them. And what would you do to lead a community like that? Would you shut down all the soccer games? Would you shut down all the senior-all these kids-I keep thinking about the inner city kids who had to play a football game per season to get scholarships to Penn State...
MATTHEWS: ... or anywhere, and they didn’t have a chance for all those weeks. What do you-would you keep it open?
GIULIANI: Obviously, very tough call, right? And I-on a different level I had to make decisions like that in September and October and November of last year, whether to go forward with the baseball playoffs, whether to go forward with the marathon, whether to go forward with-remember the first big event outdoors was the opening of Metropolitan Opera and they decided to put a screen out at Lincoln Center and have people watch, because it would be an overflow audience...
GIULIANI: ... and they were raising money for the charities at that time, and I was very afraid nobody would show up. I thought-it was only a week and a half later and the place was filled with like four or 5,000 people outside. What I found is you have to let people make their own decisions. So I guess what I would have done is to say if you want to go ahead and have the event, I encourage you to go ahead. I encourage life to go ahead as normal. If you don’t, I understand. I understand that people can be frightened or worried, and then we’ll do the best we can to police it. I mean we’ll do the...
MATTHEWS: Suppose you had gotten that note from the fellow, apparently from one of the snipers that said your kids aren’t safe. That note really-would you put that message out? Would you have waited as long as the police did in that case to put that message out?
GIULIANI: I don’t know. I mean I don’t know the internal dynamics that they were facing. The general rule that I follow about things like that is, you can set a direction and then you have to understand that people are going to act differently.
GIULIANI: I encourage people to go out. I encourage people to go to restaurants. I encourage people to come to New York, go to Time Square. Some people responded because that’s the way they are and some people felt well, you know we’re not ready for it yet. We are nervous; we are concerned. You have to respect them if they are. I...
MATTHEWS: What do you think of profiling? You were a U.S. attorney in New York. What do you think of it as a way of catching a bad guy?
GIULIANI: If it’s objective, it’s absolutely necessary.
MATTHEWS: If this time-I mean just to be blunt about it. It’s an ethnic commentary, but the fact is everybody was out looking for a couple of white guys or one white guy. They’re looking for a white van. It turns out to be two African American guys, actually Jamaican-borne people, who weren’t really born here, but islanders. It was totally off, so these guys kept going through police checkpoint after police checkpoint. The cop said fine, go ahead, you’re no problem.
GIULIANI: But it was...
MATTHEWS: It was a reverse kind of profiling.
GIULIANI: Yes. Well it was just a mistake. I mean...
GIULIANI: ... they had the wrong information. If profiling is based upon the description that’s given to you of the person or persons who committed the crime, then obviously you have to do that. I mean...
GIULIANI: ... if you’re looking for somebody who’s 6’5” you’re not going to go, you know, (UNINTELLIGIBLE) across the board and go look for people who are 5’1”.
GIULIANI: You’re going to go look for people who are close to 6’5”.
MATTHEWS: But let’s talk about...
GIULIANI: Think about profiling this way. In New York City, about 90 percent of the people that are searched by the police are male. If you did it based upon demographics, well, then 53 percent of the people they searched would be women.
GIULIANI: Well you search men because 90 percent of the time...
GIULIANI: ... men are reported as the people who...
GIULIANI: ... commit the crimes. So that’s a form of profiling.
MATTHEWS: Well let’s talk about profiled bullets because a lot of people think we ought to have gun control in this country and a lot of people disagree with that, passionately. What about the new science, and you’re a former U.S. attorney, you’re a cop. I mean you’ve been after these guys. If we have a science that’s able to identify uniquely a bullet with a gun, should we use that science?
GIULIANI: How do you mean?
MATTHEWS: To track down a guy who used the gun. In this case we had lots of bullets in people-people were dead, they pulled the slug out. They could identify a particular...
MATTHEWS: ... weapon with it. Do you believe that science is up to date? That ballistic...
GIULIANI: I don’t...
MATTHEWS: ... fingerprinting is up to date.
GIULIANI: I don’t know that it’s completely accurate.
MATTHEWS: If it is, would you use it?
GIULIANI: Obviously, sure. I’d use any...
MATTHEWS: Even though the NRA and people like Charlton Heston are out waving their guns in the air. They don’t want this.
GIULIANI: Any objective message that can be used that can track down criminals, obviously it’s a fair-nothing wrong with the fairness of the method.
GIULIANI: It should be used.
MATTHEWS: But why do you think the NRA is opposed to it? Why are they fighting it like mad. They don’t want...
MATTHEWS: ... ballistic fingerprinting.
GIULIANI: I have no idea. It’s no different than having regular fingerprinting or iris identification or DNA. DNA I’m very much in favor of. I think...
MATTHEWS: So obviously you’re not running for president. I mean I don’t hear courage like this among the guys running. I hear guys-they start to waffle. They start to dance when you say anything about guns.
They all do. Al Gore ran from it.
GIULIANI: I mean there’s no-I mean the reality is that people have a right to have guns. They have a constitutional right. It should be respected and protected. At the same time, the fact that guns in an urban environment...
GIULIANI: ... or guns in a very densely populated environment, they’re dangerous and you...
GIULIANI: ... have to have laws and regulations.
GIULIANI: It’s no different than regulating anything else. You have a right to travel.
GIULIANI: Everybody has a right to travel. It’s a constitutionally protected right, but yet we require you to have a driver’s license. We require you to pass certain regulations. You have to be in some states 16, 17, 18, depending on the age...
GIULIANI: ... and you’ve got to take a test to demonstrate you can drive the automobile correctly. So I see it very much the same way. You have a right to bear arms, but that doesn’t mean you can’t place reasonable regulations on the right to bear arms like you do the right to drive.
MATTHEWS: Let’s talk about something that’s tragic that happened this week. It happened in Russia and Moscow with the use of gas to subdue and it killed 120 people. Six hundred people got away live, who were held captive by the Chechen rebels. It reminded me of what happened here in Philadelphia in the ’80s, you know with Wilson Goods (ph) police force...
MATTHEWS: ... and what happened to Palatine Village (ph) right near here with the group, the Back to Africa Group, they got involved in that, and the whole block was burned down. Right? They had the wrong...
MATTHEWS: They thought it was a smoke bomb; it was an incendiary device. In this case do you think it was justified to get that tough with rebels or terrorists, if you will. That’s what Putin considers them, that you have to use extreme measures to-they had the women mined. The woman had dynamite strapped to them. They had the whole place mined. If any cop or soldier had tried to go in there, they all would have blown up. Is it better to save 600 lives even in this ruthless matter of using this gas?
GIULIANI: Wow. I mean really tough.
GIULIANI: I think-obviously, it is justified, given the situation to use extreme means to try to save as many people as possible, because it was reasonable to come to the conclusion that a lot more people were going to die. Whether they used the right method or not, whether they had warned people enough in advance, warned the hospitals, whether that’s-whether there’s anything else that can be used...
MATTHEWS: Yes, they didn’t use the antidote fast enough apparently.
GIULIANI: Yes. I don’t have the answer to that. Those are the...
MATTHEWS: But that kind of attitude...
GIULIANI: ... have to be looked at.
MATTHEWS: ... which is kick ass, get tough. These are the bad guys.
They’re suicidal. Don’t cut them a break. Do you buy that?
GIULIANI: Absolutely, yes. I mean absolutely. When you’re dealing with terrorists, they are cold-blooded killers, and the question becomes a very tough one. Are you going to save more or lose more, and maybe this wasn’t the right thing to use, but I think the idea that they had to take extreme measures is correct.
MATTHEWS: OK, let’s get to the first question. Go ahead sir.
QUESTION: Former Mayor, in every war there’s an objective that you have to try to accomplish. So in the war-in the war in terror that we’re now engaged in, how do we know when we’ve won? What-how do we know when we’ve reached our objective?
GIULIANI: That’s a very interesting question. I believe that the president actually addressed that way back in September of last year when he gave his address to the joint session of Congress.
This is a war that we may not know we’ve won because it’s not against a-we will know, for example, if we go to war against Iraq.
GIULIANI: We’ll know that we’ve removed Saddam Hussein. We’ll probably know that we’ve removed his regime, and we might be able to put it on a road to democracy. But there’s still a lot of other terrorist states.
I think the only way we’re going to know is when we see a major reduction in the number of terrorist incidents, maybe an end of terrorist incidents. You get the kind of reports that you get from intelligence and counter intelligence that these groups have been put on the run, or they’ve been dispersed.
And the reality is we may not completely end it. We may just reduce it dramatically. I think that may be more the goal than if you were fighting a particular specific enemy.
MATTHEWS: Next question please.
QUESTION: Hi. How do you think the war on terror is affecting the Muslim community here in the states?
GIULIANI: How do I think it’s affecting the...
QUESTION: Affecting the Muslim community.
GIULIANI: Well I try-I tried very, very hard from the first day-the first-I think it was the second or third press conference that I had that day, to make this point, and then I kept making it over and over again. And I think it’s mostly the case, and that is that you should not take the incidents of September 11, the attacks of September 11 and blame them on a group of people.
That if we do that as Americans, we’re engaging in the same thing we’re fighting-prejudice, group blame, assigning group blame. And I think most Americans respond that way. It isn’t universally true. It isn’t completely true. It probably never is going to be.
But I think if you consider the kind of reaction that could have occurred after those attacks on September 11, I think most Americans have internalized now maybe beyond where we were 40 or 50 years ago. We’ve internalized the idea that you don’t blame a group of people. The Muslim community is a vast and very diverse community. It’s a peaceful community, and it has some people included in it in that general description who are extremists. I mean in the history of the world that’s been true of every group.
MATTHEWS: We’re going to come right back in a moment after this break with Rudy Giuliani. We’re going to ask him about the president’s leadership in this upcoming war-it looks like a war with Iraq.
And by the way, we’re on the “College Tour” here at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia. And don’t forget, next Tuesday night we’re going to be covering the election from 7:00 Eastern all the way through the evening.
We’re going to have people like-let’s see, we’re going to have Peggy Noonan on that night, Howard Fineman, Donna Brazile and the great Patrick Caddell all night coverage on MSNBC. I’ll be handling that. Please join us Election Night.
Back with more with Rudy Giuliani at Penn.
MATTHEWS: Well we’re talking about Mayor Giuliani, who’s now become not only one of the great cops in our history, a great prosecutor with the Pizza Connection and other great triumphs, but he’s now number one on “The New York Times” bestseller’s list-pretty good.
Let’s talk about leadership. Generally in the world we have a president that reminds me sometimes of Henry V. He’s a warrior president. He’s-I think he really started as that-in that role up in your city on the 14th of September...
GIULIANI: That was the day he came up and met with all the people at ground zero. It was a very, very, very, very emotional day, and I think that he gave them a great deal of spirit, a great deal of morale, a great deal of strength, and I think they-in a way you could see like an exchange of just helping each other and assisting each other that they gave him.
I mean he-I remember when he left ground zero, after staying there three times longer than he should have...
GIULIANI: ... he said to Governor Pataki and to me, these are the people who fight and win our wars, and he was pointing to the, you know, not just the firefighters and police officers, but the-you know the construction workers who were there.
MATTHEWS: Something sacramental happened up there with him, with this president. Before he went up there to New York, he didn’t seem to be a legitimate president by the likes of a lot of liberal Democrats. He comes back, he’s everybody’s president, it seems to me. The other thing that happened this year...
GIULIANI: Yes, I would agree with...
MATTHEWS: ... this year was so interesting...
GIULIANI: ... the first part of that. I mean...
GIULIANI: ... he was-I always thought he was...
MATTHEWS: Well, it’s you.
GIULIANI: ... and a heck of a...
MATTHEWS: But there’s a lot of people that disagree with you.
GIULIANI: But I do agree...
MATTHEWS: I mean still to this day...
GIULIANI: But I do agree with the second part.
GIULIANI: I think that-I think something very special happened between him and-and the way I look at it is between him and his people...
GIULIANI: ... you know, and I think he realized-I remember thinking the day that this happened, while I was going through trying to put together New York City government, I felt sorry for the president, because this is a new president...
GIULIANI: ... a nine-month president and then I saw it because I supported him and know him, I said...
GIULIANI: ... thank God he’s president of the United States because I know the kind of character he has. And I think he grew into it...
GIULIANI: I mean he grew into the...
MATTHEWS: So those people that work here-the real worker bees of our society-the cops, the firemen, the construction guys-it’s their kids that fight the wars. Right? I want to ask everybody here, how many of you people support the war with Iraq if it comes to that?
MATTHEWS: How many oppose it?
MATTHEWS: Of those who support it, I want those to stand up who are willing and plan to go join the military and fight the war, actually join the military and fight the war, you’re planning to do that now. OK, where’s the other 99 percent of you who support the war that don’t intend to participate in it. I don’t want to be Bobby Kennedy here, but isn’t that a problem? That’s what he used to do. But do you see the problem here, Mr. Mayor?
MATTHEWS: The working-class people-I hate to use the word class-the working people, whose kids whether they’re Puerto Rican or they’re from Arkansas or they’re white kids or black kids or Hispanic, they’re the ones that are going to do the fighting, and the kids in elite schools like Penn — I know I’m not offending you, elite schools like Penn aren’t going to do it, but they’re going to cheer it on. They’re going to read the op-ed pages in the newspapers. They’re going to root for the war, but they ain’t going to it.
GIULIANI: Right. But...
MATTHEWS: Doesn’t that bother you as an American?
GIULIANI: I guess in a way it’s a thing that you always have to confront...
MATTHEWS: We didn’t in World War II...
MATTHEWS: In World War II the elite fought in the war. Everybody from every college got out of school fast and went and fought in the war.
GIULIANI: I think if this became...
MATTHEWS: The guys from William & Mary (ph), intellectuals fought in that war.
GIULIANI: I think if this became a broad-based war, everybody would fight or not everybody, but a lot of people would. But the fact is this is approached as much more of an isolated kind of action. So you don’t have - - the Second World War was a worldwide war that engaged everyone. And it was going to be fought over a four, five-year period. This may turn out to be four or five years, but it’s seen as a limited action involving just a certain number of people.
MATTHEWS: But where’s the passion?
GIULIANI: And I don’t think...
MATTHEWS: In the ’30s, the left in this country went and fought with the Abraham Lincoln brigade against the fascists in Spain.
GIULIANI: But that was a very-that’d be...
GIULIANI: ... very small number of people.
MATTHEWS: ... the people in 1941 joined up after Pearl Harbor. I don’t see anybody racing out to join up now. Isn’t that different?
GIULIANI: It’s different than the Second World War. It’s not terribly different than the limited actions that we’ve had in the past. The Korean War, the Vietnam War, of course, was much more controversial, but I think it was also true of the Korean War. You didn’t have-we went to war against Korea.
You didn’t have a mass number of people, you know, volunteering at that time because we had the draft, so you didn’t need it. But you didn’t have a mass number of people volunteering for the Korean War much more than you did the Vietnam War. They were seen as limited actions as...
GIULIANI: ... opposed to a worldwide war that was for the future of our...
GIULIANI: ... civilization.
MATTHEWS: Let’s pick this up on the other side with Rudolph Giuliani. We’re going to talk about why he’s campaigning so hard for Republicans around the country.
And don’t forget, in two weeks the HARDBALL “College Tour” heads to the Air Force Academy for an in-depth examination of America’s possible war with Iraq.
And then on the 20th, Hillary Rodham Clinton from the State University in Albany-that’s Hillary Clinton, your friend and mine. You’re watching the HARDBALL “College Tour”.
MATTHEWS: Let’s go. First question. Go ahead.
QUESTION: Do you think the politicians are using the war on Iraq and the war on terrorism to divert attention from other issues like education and poverty and gun control?
GIULIANI: I don’t think anybody is using the war on either side, the people who favor it or the people who oppose it, or the people who are more ambiguous about it. It’s such a compelling issue. I think they’re telling you what they really think. I think the president is. I think some of his opponents are. You know I think this is a very-this is an issue that’s too important for people to be using it or manipulating it.
MATTHEWS: What did you think of Paul Wellstone sticking to his guns and these other Democrats who are opposed to the war chickening out and voting for the president’s position?
MATTHEWS: And that’s a loaded question.
GIULIANI: No, it’s-I think I would have said the same thing before, you know, the tragedy...
GIULIANI: ... the tragedy happened. I think people respect-respected or respect...
GIULIANI: ... Paul Wellstone. He believes consistently in the things that he espouses. It was a very legitimate position for him to take. I disagree with it. I think it’s wrong. I think it’s very wrong, but you respect him for it.
MATTHEWS: What about the Democrats...
MATTHEWS: ... who voted with the president, but didn’t agree with him, or just did it for political reasons, for cover.
GIULIANI: If you can actually...
MATTHEWS: Like Hillary and John Kerry...
GIULIANI: If you can honestly locate them, if that’s really the case
no I’m serious...
MATTHEWS: Well people like Feinstein, Hillary, and John Kerry, all speaking against the war every single day, and the minute it comes down to a vote, they vote with the president.
GIULIANI: I think maybe this is a situation in which...
GIULIANI: ... would have given them the benefit of the doubt.
MATTHEWS: Hard break. More with the “Man of the Year”, Rudy Giuliani, coming back with HARDBALL at Penn, the University of Pennsylvania.
MATTHEWS: The HARDBALL “College Tour” is at the University of Pennsylvania with former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani. I’m going to ask Rudy Giuliani if he thinks Hillary Clinton should be president, but first the news.
MATTHEWS: We’re back at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The name of Rudy Giuliani’s book is called “Leadership.” I stumbled on that.
And as HARDBALL correspondent David Shuster reports, Giuliani knows a lot about that subject.
DAVID SHUSTER, HARDBALL CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): He will forever be known as America’s mayor, an executive icon who led his city with strength and dignity during one of the saddest times in New York history.
GIULIANI: The number of casualties will be more than any of us can bear ultimately.
SHUSTER: That September it seemed the entire world was turning to the mayor for comfort, compassion, and hope.
LORNE MICHAELS, TELEVISION PRODUCER: Can we be funny?
GIULIANI: Why start now?
SHUSTER: But even before that, Giuliani had already rescued New York. And from squeegee men to subway panhandlers to Times Square, the transformation of the city during the Giuliani administration was nothing short of miraculous. Under his leadership, overall crime dropped 57 percent, murder was reduced by 65 percent, and New York City, once infamous for its dangerous streets was recognized by the FBI as the safest large city in America the last five years.
Giuliani also brought back an old-fashioned work ethic. He implemented the country’s largest and most successful welfare to work initiative, cutting welfare rolls in half. In addition Giuliani reduced taxes by over $2.5 billion and in the city’s public schools, funding went up by 50 percent. Test scores were raised and programs such as bilingual education and special ed were successfully reformed.
New York was once deemed ungovernable but from 1993 to 2001, Rudy Giuliani proved not only that the city was governable, but he proved what real leadership is all about.
I’m David Shuster for HARDBALL.
MATTHEWS: We’re back with Rudy Giuliani. Let’s talk politics. No applause yet, because everyone wants to hear what you stand for now. I want to ask you about the word leadership, name of your book, “Leadership.”
Hillary Clinton, has she got it?
GIULIANI: Not from my point of view.
GIULIANI: Nice person, good...
MATTHEWS: That was mostly guys cheering, by the way. How many women like Hillary Clinton?
MATTHEWS: It’s different. Go ahead.
GIULIANI: I respect her. I like her. I’ve gotten to know her since...
MATTHEWS: Would you have beaten her for the Senate?
GIULIANI: I have no-I have no idea.
MATTHEWS: Would you like to have beaten her?
GIULIANI: Well, of course, if I ran I would have liked to have-do I look like a person who wants to run and lose?
MATTHEWS: Would you have enjoyed the process, would you have enjoyed the animal prospect of beating this woman?
GIULIANI: I don’t know if I would have won or loss but when I dropped out of the race because I had prostate cancer, I thought I was going to win, but I could have been wrong and she won a very big victory. She won by a very large margin. I’ve forgotten what the exact percentage is, so if you look at that, you say it would have been tough.
But I think she’s a good person. I respect her. I disagree with her and I have a very different philosophy than she has. So from my point of view she would not be a person that I would want to be a leader because she has a different set of views. She would move the country in a different direction but not because of anything about her.
MATTHEWS: Think of the oval office, Mr. Mayor, and think of Hillary Clinton. Do you see her in the oval office?
GIULIANI: Not from my perspective, no, not with the ideas that she has.
MATTHEWS: Would she have the competence to be president apart from philosophy?
GIULIANI: I don’t think there’s a question of-she’s a very intelligent person. She’s involved in public service. She’s certainly a competent person. I disagree with her ideas.
MATTHEWS: Is she a New Yorker? That’s the cutter, isn’t it? Is she a New Yorker?
GIULIANI: She’s the United States senator from New York, so...
MATTHEWS: Definitional question. Let me ask you about the man who
has an office up in Harlem right now, the man who was just elected to the
Arkansas black hall of fame, William Jefferson Clinton. What do you make
of this guy? An amazing transformation to New Yorker to Harlemite to
black leader, I mean, how does he do this? How does he do this? He can
do anything, this guy.
GIULIANI: Well, actually he always had a very close relationship with New York. So it’s not-it wasn’t unusual to me that he decided to move his office to New York.
MATTHEWS: What is it, a fundraising capital?
GIULIANI: No, I think-Well, first of all, he won like 75 percent of the vote in New York. That makes you really attached to a place when you get 75 percent of the vote.
MATTHEWS: Is he the new boss Twead of New York? I mean he knocks off Andrew Cuomo. He brings in McCall. He seems to be calling the shots up there. He’s got his wife in the Senate from up there. Is he the new boss twead of New York politics?
GIULIANI: No. Bill Clinton-the comparison with Boss Twead would not be the right comparison.
MATTHEWS: How would you describe his role in New York politics?
GIULIANI: The city of New York doesn’t have that kind of thing any longer. There’s a lot of different people that, you know, run candidates, support candidates, some win, some lose. Governor Pataki is going to run for re-election. Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton are on the other side of that race. But George is going to win a big, big victory.
MATTHEWS: Turning to Washington, why do you think - you have a fabulous approval rating in the country. I know you and Colin Powell, one of my heroes or (UNINTELLIGIBLE) he’s 78. You’re 76. I don’t know who’s gaining on who but you’re up there.
GIULIANI: When you say 78 and 76...
MATTHEWS: No, that’s your popularity. By the way, did you hear Mondale’s slogan? He’s younger than Lautenberg. No, you were up there so high you could laugh about it. But Dick Cheney, I love to pronounce it that way, Dick Cheney is under 50 percent. Why don’t people like Dick Cheney?
GIULIANI: I don’t know if-those approval ratings, I don’t know what they mean. I don’t know if they’re for real. I think Dick Cheney is a terrific vice president. I mean, vice presidents are never on their own usually popular. The president really emerges-the president becomes the popular one or the president is the unpopular one, but he’s-look, Al Gore had that problem when he was vice president.
MATTHEWS: Let’s talk about another possibility for V.P. and I know you’re a political student as well.
GIULIANI: The Al Gore situation is fascinating. People would almost seem to blame on Al Gore the things they didn’t want to blame on Bill Clinton. Remember that whole...
MATTHEWS: He was the bathtub ring of the Clinton administration.
GIULIANI: I don’t know about that, but it was an amazing phenomena to watch.
MATTHEWS: He was the residue. You’re right. I think they blamed him more than...
GIULIANI: I think they blamed him...
MATTHEWS: You know, you talk about here in “Leadership.” Remember when Henry the eighth jumped in the mud in “Man for All Season,” and all the courtiers jumped in the mud after him. He got in the mud by accident. The courtiers jumped in to be with their king. People like the king.
GIULIANI: Yes and Bill Clinton is very masterful, very masterful communicator and knew how to deal with things and maybe Al Gore didn’t have that talent.
MATTHEWS: Do you think the Republicans are smart enough to put Condi Rice on their ticket next time and is that smart, as a V.P. candidate?
GIULIANI: Well, she certainly I think has been a terrific national security adviser. On September 11 when I started reflecting on the president being a new president, the first thing that made me feel secure is that I know him and he’s a man of character and I just had a sense that he could-he would grow into it.
But the second thing that made me feel secure was the team he had around him, Colin Powell who you mentioned, Rumsfeld, Cheney, and Condoleezza Rice and I think the four of them, as well as the other people, have really been terrific, and she’s a remarkably talented person. I mean, she really is.
MATTHEWS: Would she be a tough candidate for V.P. to beat?
GIULIANI: She would be somebody that would be a very, very powerful candidate.
MATTHEWS: Let me ask about one of your heroes you mention in your book, George Steinbrenner who runs the Yankees.
MATTHEWS: There’s a reaction. Tough customer. He used to be one of the characters mentioned on “Seinfeld” a lot. Is he a leader?
GIULIANI: George, absolutely, without any question. Look at all the championships he’s brought to the Yankees and the way in which he inspires the team.
MATTHEWS: What does he teach us. What does Steinbrenner teach us?
GIULIANI: I think that first of all, he enforces discipline. He may be the last owner in sports that actually can set a standard and requires you to follow that standard. The players have to be clean shaven. They have to be neat. They have to act respectfully, and I think it makes it possible, that’s one of the things I point out in the book. It makes it possible for Joe Torre to then do the things he does really well, which is to more or less understand them, understand their psychology, get the most out of them but that discipline that Steinbrenner has in the background is really, really important I think to their performance. They don’t even realize it.
MATTHEWS: How can we learn from that in government?
GIULIANI: I think that you need to be at times unpopular. You mentioned Paul Wellstone before, right, who was on the other side of the political thinking for me. I mean, I have-probably if he had a voting record, I would have 90 percent of the time voted differently than him but I respect the fact that he truly believes what he’s talking about. I think Ronald Reagan was an example on the conservative side of that. He was somebody that you knew where he stood, and even if it was unpopular, he would stand up for it, and I think that inspires people. I think people need more of that...
GIULIANI: Yes. They need more of the sense of the politicians are talking to them, talking from their heart and from their conscience and mind and from their intellect, not just pandering to them. As I think Wellstone and Ronald Reagan are examples of.
MATTHEWS: Sorry to interrupt. We’re going to come right back with Mayor Rudy Giuliani and talk about a real fight and we’re going to find out what side are you on? Are for “The Sopranos” or against “The Sopranos?” We’re with Rudy Giuliani, the nation’s hero at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
Don’t forget, get news, guest lineups and inside scoops on my show. It’s all delivered free to you by e-mail. Sign up for the HARDBALL briefing. It’s at hardball.msnbc.com. We’re with Rudy coming back.
MATTHEWS: We’re back with Rudolph Giuliani. You have got to be one of the great Italian Americans as we used to say in Philadelphia, Italians, everybody is slash American, hyphenated. What do you think about “The Sopranos?” First of all, I know you watch it, so move on from there.
GIULIANI: So what are you asking me the question for? You want to make trouble or what?
MATTHEWS: ...to amuse you.
GIULIANI: I should just whack him out, huh?
GIULIANI: I think I’ve had to deal with this for a long time so I’ve had a chance to really think about it. When I first became a United States attorney in 1983, 1984, I brought the first group of cases against the Mafia. And I referred to them both in the indictment and in the press release as the Mafia.
And all of a sudden I had protesters showing up, and I found out that the Justice Department actually had a policy signed by John Mitchell many years before which you could not use the word Mafia. And I had people telling me the Mafia didn’t exist. I had Italian-American groups protesting me, telling me the Mafia didn’t exist, and I could see members of the Mafia in the group. I could see a couple of members like...
MATTHEWS: One of the guys the anti-defamation league, active in the organization?
GIULIANI: Joe Columbo (ph) actually started the Italian civil rights league and he was the head of the Columbo crime family and it seemed to me the much better way to deal with it, and it’s helped me kind of think my way through prejudice is there are some bad Italian-Americans. And they organize-some of them organize in the Mafia. Big deal. There’s some bad everybody.
And the reality is, you just stand up against it, and I think “The Sopranos” is a good drama. I think it’s terrific in many respects and it uses that as a backdrop. You know, 99 others use something else as a backdrop and Italian-Americans should not be as sensitive about it. I’m very proud of...
MATTHEWS: Should Joey Pants have been to allowed to walk in the parade, the Columbus day parade (UNINTELLIGIBLE)?
GIULIANI: Yeah, I think that Mayor Bloomberg invited them-it was actually Lorraine Brocco and Dominic Chianese to march with him. They’re both very, very fine actors. They’re both very proud Italian-Americans like I am and they had every right to march in that parade. I think the mayor was right and the organizers of the parade were operating off sort of an insecurity that we should kind of get over and get beyond.
MATTHEWS: More courage from Rudy Giuliani. OK. Let’s go. Next question.
QUESTION: I’m just wondering what the mayor sees as his political future, whether you’re going to accept a position in the administration or challenge Chuck Schumer in 2004 or Hillary in 2008.
GIULIANI: This guy is sharp.
MATTHEWS: He’s up to date. This guy is good. So let’s go through the questions.
GIULIANI: I don’t know-I do not know what my political future is beyond the next year.
MATTHEWS: Wouldn’t you love to knock off Chuck Schumer though? Wouldn’t that be fun? I mean, wouldn’t it just be - the process, wouldn’t that be enjoyable to beat him? Wouldn’t that be fun?
GIULIANI: You mean just like pure fun?
MATTHEWS: The pure fun of beating a guy, you know about that.
GIULIANI: He’s actually a good friend. I work with him a lot.
MATTHEWS: Of whose?
GIULIANI: Of mine.
MATTHEWS: That’s what everybody says.
GIULIANI: And his wife Iris was my commissioner of transportation for...
MATTHEWS: All the better. You can turn the tables on him now. So you really-when you say I haven’t thought about ever running for anything again, no one believes that.
GIULIANI: Well, they shouldn’t believe that.
MATTHEWS: Well, they don’t believe it.
GIULIANI: I don’t plan to do it. Of course I think about it. I think about running...
MATTHEWS: You plan not to do it?
GIULIANI: No, no, no. I think about...
MATTHEWS: You wouldn’t rule out running for the Senate.
GIULIANI: You’re not going to get me to rule on anything. I might not even rule out running for who knows what, I mean commissioner of something or other.
MATTHEWS: Could you sell down in the Bible belt — you’re pro-choice. You’re pro gay rights, all this nice things for big cities, but once you get down in Utah and you get to Mississippi, are they going to buy your act?
GIULIANI: A couple of years ago I did a fundraiser for the head of the Republican party in South Carolina who is a former U.S. attorney that I worked with. I showed up at his house and there were a group of protesters outside.
So the police are worried about the protesters and I said-I said who is protesting. It’s a gay group and I thought, well, why are they protesting? And they said they’re not protesting. They’re protesting in your favor so that the South Carolina Republican party will change its mind.
GIULIANI: So they were outside and I went over and talked to them and
so you have different viewpoints. I mean, I believe that you should not discriminate based on race, gender, sexual orientation. Other people in my party respect me for that. Maybe some others don’t. There are Democrats. The Democratic candidate in South Carolina just attacked me because...
MATTHEWS: A couple of gay roommates.
GIULIANI: I did. I moved in with and spent some time with two very good friends of mine. They’re gay. The guy attacks me for that. So that’s a Democrat. Guys, I know this is a Democratic audience. That was the Democratic candidate that attacked me. So don’t-these things run through parties. They have to do with, I think, a wrong way of looking at the world, which is, you know, you respect people for the choices that they make instead of trying to categorize them.
MATTHEWS: Next question.
QUESTION: Yes, in the book “Ungovernable City,” Vincent Canato (ph) compared to John Lindsey but said that you made the city governable. Could you talk about what was different about your leadership skills compared to...
MATTHEWS: We’re going to pick it up on the other side. We’re going to talk about how he made the city of New York work and he really did. The subways smelled better. Everything was better. More with Rudy Giuliani, the hero of New York.
MATTHEWS: Mayor Giuliani, the question just asked how did you govern an ungovernable city, how did you do an undoable job? And I want you to follow up on that thought with this with that question, a second part, could you run homeland security effectively. Is that a doable job?
GIULIANI: The answer to the question is it was accountability. I began-there’s a chapter in the book about that.
MATTHEWS: The name of the book is “Leadership.”
GIULIANI: I put a name plate on my desk when I was the mayor and it said “I’m responsible.” And I used to look at it every day and the idea is accountability. You try to make every one of the agencies accountable. You get them into the mindset that they’re delivering a service and they’re like a business and they’ve got to do a good job of cleaning the streets, they’ve got to do a good job of getting marriage licenses out on time or they have to do a good job of running the hospitals.
So I ran it like a business I guess is the way to describe it. And I tried to find measures of accountability that substituted for profit and loss in the way that I ran it. And as far as homeland security is concerned, homeland security is a question, really, of two things. Improving our border security, which I think the new agency will do because of the way it combines customs and INS, and then helping to train state and local officials.
Because our first defense is going to be the local fire department, the local police department, the local sheriff’s office, and the department of homeland security has to organize these people, all of them to be trained. Some are very well trained like the big cities, a lot of the big cities, some of the suburban areas. Some don’t have the training. And the department of homeland security, that really has to be their job, how do you coordinate that? How do you do it in regions?
MATTHEWS: How do you do it in port cities, like Philadelphia, which is still a port city, New York’s a big port city, with these huge cartons coming in from around the world, this incredible cargo. There was a guy that came in a couple months ago was in there.
GIULIANI: Yeah, technology is going to help a lot so that our commerce can move and a lot of people are out there competing with each other trying to invent it. But I think that ultimately could help a lot.
MATTHEWS: Question sir.
QUESTION: Since the Yankees have lost in the playoffs in the last two years, are you ready to admit that the Mets are the superior team?
(CHEERS AND APPLAUSE)
GIULIANI: Wait, wait, wait, we’ve got to correct the question. The Yankees lost in the playoffs this year, they lost in the last game of the World Series the year before and the last time they played the Mets and the only time they played them in the World Series, I think the Yankees won four games and the Mets won one game. But the difference is I like the Mets, but I love the Yankees.
MATTHEWS: Would you accept the job of commissioner of baseball should it come open?
GIULIANI: I think-see that young man, he would object to me being commissioner.
MATTHEWS: No, but what about yourself?
GIULIANI: I’d have a conflict of interest.
MATTHEWS: If Bud Selig were ever to step aside, would you like to be baseball commissioner because the sport does suffer from a lack from popularity. I think the games are too long. Would you do anything to change baseball to make it more exciting?
GIULIANI: You mean like shorten the game a bit?
MATTHEWS: Get the guys to stay on the pitcher’s mound and stay in the batting box and play the game.
GIULIANI: I love the game.
MATTHEWS: You don’t mind those time outs.
GIULIANI: You know what I would worry about being commissioner of baseball? Nobody’s offered it to me and I’m not sure I’d be even offered this. I think it would ruin the game making it a business. I love the game so much - I know the viewership for the two world series, the last two world series games was down, but I loved it. I watched it. I enjoyed it.
MATTHEWS: Mayor Rudy Giuliani, a great guy. Thanks for being on the show. The “Chris Matthews Show” this weekend. Tomorrow night more HARDBALL. The name of his book is “Leadership.” Great book.
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