Rudy Giuliani revived his occasional role as the morning news show's preeminent voice on general crisis management Tuesday, and took the opportunity to bash Obama's handling of the Gulf oil spill.
GIULIANI: If this is job number one, which I don't think it was, because the president was off on vacation twice during all of this.
SCARBOROUGH: Did you go on vacation, Mr. Mayor? Did you go on vacation as mayor? Isn't that a cheap shot?
GIULIANI: No, it is not a cheap shot.
SCARBOROUGH: You never went on vacation?
GIULIANI: Not in the middle of a crisis I didn't.
SCARBOROUGH: Ronald Reagan went on vacation. George W. Bush went on vacation.
GIULIANI: Did not, not in the middle of a crisis. This is the second time the President has done that and I resent it. On Christmas Day when we had the Christmas bombing he was on vacation, remained on vacation for 11 days. He's the President of the United States of America.
SCARBOROUGH: It's Christmas. They've got microphones in Chicago.
Giuliani then relayed an anecdote about an experience he had during his first year as Mayor of New York City, and finally concluded:
"This has been a gross failure in crisis management, could not have done it worse. And you shouldn't be on vacation when a crisis is affecting your country."
Though Giuliani himself was well known for being reluctant to take vacations during his time as Mayor, the same can't be said for Reagan or Bush.
President George W. Bush dwarfed Reagan's prior record of 436 vacation days -- much of whose Cold War presidency arguably took place during a "crisis" -- racking up a massive 487 days at Camp David and another 490 days at his Crawford, Texas ranch. Bush was notoriously on vacation during the vital days before the 9/11 attacks and after Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast.
Furthermore, Giuliani's supposed affinity for executive presence drew criticism itself for being misstated. Media Matters points out:
The New York Daily News reported on August 10, 2007, that Giuliani "drew outrage and indignation from Sept. 11 first-responders yesterday by saying he spent as much time -- or more -- exposed to the site's dangers as workers who dug through the debris for the missing and the dead." On August 17, 2007, The New York Times reported that "for the period of Sept. 17 to Dec. 16, 2001," Giuliani spent "a total of 29 hours" at the WTC ruins "often for short periods or to visit locations adjacent to the rubble." The Times added that "[i]n that same period, many rescue and recovery workers put in daily 12-hour shifts."