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DNC: Rudy Cuts and Pastes to Fit the Moment

By Dan Janison

Rudy Giuliani, in his established role as a traveling flack for John McCain, is now speaking with tremendous respect for "his senator," Hillary Clinton, whom he had expected to run against, and who turns big star as we post.

Very subtle.

There's speculation in GOP circles that Giuliani Partners could do well under a McCain presidency, say with fat contracts. Or, if Obama wins, and then looks vulnerable enough in 2012, Giuliani could give the presidency another try.

But of course the ex-mayor was against Clinton before he was for her, as shown by the sample dispatches below. Emphasis, of course, added.

In a dispatch filed yesterday by CBS Giuliani says: "Well, I think it's actually weakness. I mean is it 'tough' to turn down the person that gives you the best chance to win because it unites the party or is it some kind of difficulty in dealing with one of your rivals? I mean honestly, I am just speculating, I don't know," said Giuliani from the beach resort town of Sag Harbor on Saturday.

And this is from September 17, 2007: (AP) Republican presidential candidate Rudy Giuliani denounced Democratic rival Hillary Rodham Clinton on Wednesday for challenging the Capitol Hill testimony of the top U.S. military commander in Iraq.

"Hillary Clinton, questioning Gen. (David) Petraeus, said you had to suspend disbelief," Giuliani said after a brief campaign stop at an Akron restaurant. "Why would you say that about an American general?"

The New York senator appeared skeptical Tuesday of the positive spin Petraeus put on improvements in Iraq, saying, "The reports that you provide to us really require the willing suspension of disbelief."

Giuliani said Petraeus was doing "the best that he can." He also criticized the liberal anti-war group MoveOn.org for running newspaper advertisements that asked "General Petraeus or General Betray Us?"

"I can't imagine why we can't get beyond maligning other people's motives nowadays in politics," said Giuliani, a former New York City mayor.

"There is no reason to do what MoveOn.org or Hillary Clinton have done - which is to make personal attacks on the general." Giuliani had a private fundraising event arranged in Akron but no details were disclosed by his campaign staff.

He arrived in Ohio - expected to again be a key political battleground in 2008 after clinching President Bush's 2004 re-election - following a fundraiser earlier in the day in Morgantown, W.Va. He was to travel to Canonsburg, Pa., and Bluffton, S.C., after the Akron visit.

Dan Janison writes and reports for Newsday's Spin Cycle blog