A few days before Bush was inaugurated in January 2001, The Onion ran one of the greatest satirical pieces of the decade: "Mere days from assuming the presidency and closing the door on eight years of Bill Clinton, president-elect George W. Bush assured the nation in a televised address Tuesday that 'our long national nightmare of peace and prosperity is finally over.'"
I thought of that piece yesterday when reading about Rudy Giuliani's latest attack on Hillary Clinton.
In a potential preview of next fall's presidential contest, Mr. Giuliani, who is seen as the front-runner for the Republican nomination, directly attacked the leading Democratic candidate, Mrs. Clinton, over a speech she gave Tuesday in New Hampshire bemoaning the return of "robber barons" and promising to pursue "shared prosperity" by increasing taxes on Americans making more than $200,000 a year.
"This would be an astounding, staggering tax increase," Mr. Giuliani told reporters yesterday after a visit to a restaurant on the edge of California's Silicon Valley. "She wants to go back to the 1990s.... It would hurt our economy. It would hurt this area dramatically. That kind of tax increase would see a decline in your venture capital. It would see a decline in your ability to focus on new technology." (emphasis added)
Now, I realize that Giuliani is probably still honing his stump speech, and he hasn't quite figured out a rationale for his presidential campaign, but going after Hillary Clinton for wanting to bring America back to the 1990s isn't exactly a persuasive pitch. Most of the country would love to go back to the '90s -- I'd even go so far as to suggest it has something to do with Hillary Clinton's support in the polls.
But as long as we're scrutinizing Giuliani's attack, does it really make any sense for him to tell venture capitalists in Silicon Valley that the '90s were bad for them? Does Giuliani even remember the '90s?
If this is the best he's got, Giuliani really has to pick up his game. This is just embarrassing.