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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

A public life

Sorry, Bub, you're seeking to be the leader of the free world, so everything about you is fair game, including your family:

Republican presidential hopeful Rudy Giuliani, whose strained relations with his children have drawn unwelcome attention in the race for U.S. president, asked on Thursday that voters "leave my family alone."

The former mayor of New York conceded there were "complexities" among his relatives but said any troubled relationships were irrelevant to his performance in public life.

"I love my family very, very much, and I would do anything for them," he said at a town hall meeting. "The best thing I can say is, kind of, to leave my family alone, you know, just like I'll leave your family alone.

Of course, he wasn't really asking "voters" to leave his family alone; his message was really for the press. Certainly the press can go overboard, and his wife is a more legitimate subject that his children. But the "complexities" of his private life are not irrelevant to how he would conduct his public duties. How handles relationships in one sphere is an indicator of how he would handle them in the other. I never bought the "Bill Clinton just lied about sex" argument. Whom one would lie to and under what circumstances should matter to citizens. I'm not saying I woud make something in a candidate's private life a primary consideration in how I vote, but I want to know so I am armed with as much information as I can get.


Larry Morris
Fri, 08/17/2007 - 8:24am

I have to disagree - unless the spouse or children are actually assisting in the decision making (which, I understand, in this case they are, ...) I would have to say leave the family alone. As one who had some "family issues" in my first marriage and with kids early on, I can definitely say they can happen no matter how much you try, and it was no-ones business. Plumber or statesman, your private life should be your own, this is one of the things that I believe is wrong with our political system and why you couldn't pay me enough to participate in it, ...