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DNC: Rudy Cuts and Pastes to Fit the Moment

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?"

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Joe Lieberman's Personal Two-party System

Many are the riveting questions if Sen. John McCain picks Sen. Joe Lieberman as his running-mate (speculation stirred here). Does it make McCain the Sen. Al Gore of 2008? Does McCain therefore lose, grow a beard, gain weight, and start a foundation? Does Lieberman stand up at this convention, as he did at the other one, but this time give a whole new meaning to his tag line, "Only in America"? Does Lieberman continue to embrace the controversial Rev. Hagee -- as he did just a few weeks ago, and compare him to Moses -- now that McCain has renounced Hagee over the pastor's dicey comments?

Some of Hagee's printed quotes: "The Roman Catholic Church, which was supposed to carry the light of the gospel, plunged the world into the dark ages.

"[John Paul II] will be remembered for staring down Communism and embracing people of all faiths and colors. He will lovingly be remembered for his bold stand against abortion. (Lieberman is avowedly "pro-choice").

"When Hitler signed a treaty with the Vatican in Rome, he said "I am only continuing the work of the Catholic Church."

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

Nation to State to Counties, GOP Weathers Peril '08

From his unique perch as Long Island's lone Republican congressman, Rep. Peter King sees a difference between the trouble his party faces in the region and the electoral peril it confronts across America.

"I think they're two separate \[problems\] that came together at the same time," King said yesterday. "There were local issues, going back to the late 1990s, in Nassau County with its budget problems. And Suffolk has had a disunited Republican party. Even just taking the congressional seats on Long Island, we didn't lose any of them due to national issues," he said, as some local losses came in otherwise flush GOP years.

King, a backer of President George W. Bush and the military effort in Iraq, acknowledged that the war has hurt the administration's popularity, given "harsh" media coverage, and that gas prices haven't helped.

Whatever the reasons, numbers published this week from 26 of the 29 states where voters register by party show GOP enrollment declining since 2005. Voter affiliation with Democrats or with no political party has risen overall. In Iowa and Nevada, Democratic registration surpassed Republican.

In Nassau, some Democrats follow the steady closing of the enrollment gap between their party and the once-mighty GOP with the zest of New Year's Eve revelers counting down the seconds to midnight. Ten years ago, Republicans held an enrollment edge of 100,000. In November, that was down to about 22,000. This week the margin stands at 13,000 and shrinking, said Nassau Democratic election commissioner Bill Biamonte.

"Demographics" is often the explanation -- more immigrants, more racial minorities, more young people, who often enroll as Democrats or unaffiliated, the waning of a previous generation. "For one," Biamonte explains, "young people coming of age are simply not registering en masse as Republicans, in contrast to their parents. And second, the diverse migration of people from outside Nassau feel that the Democratic Party is more about economic empowerment and plurality as they move into a suburban lifestyle."

But sociology explains only so much.

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