- Trump decided against appointing Giuliani as Secretary of State because of “negative stories,” according to a forthcoming book.
- Writer Andrew Kirtzman in The New Abnormal showed how Trump switched gears on Giuliani.
- “Giuliani ran this press campaign to get the job, which shut Trump down,” Kirtzman said.
After Donald Trump captured the Republican presidential nomination in 2016, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani was at the top of the list of candidates likely to land a top post in a possible cabinet.
As a former federal prosecutor and former 2008 GOP presidential hopeful, Giuliani had long been a bold politician on the national stage, but his alliance with Trump was poised to take him to new heights.
During a recent episode of The Daily Beast’s “The New Abnormal” podcast, Andrew Kirtzman — who wrote an upcoming book about Giuliani — said Trump initially “promised” the role of Secretary of State to the former mayor.
“According to many people I interviewed, he [Trump] had promised Giuliani that job during the campaign,” Kirtzman said during the podcast. “That was the only job Giuliani wanted. He was offered attorney general – he turned it down. He was offered the security of the country – he turned it down.”
“He modeled himself after his kind of God-like perception as this statesman even though he didn’t have five minutes of foreign policy experience,” he added.
In the book, “Giuliani: The Tragic Rise and Fall of America’s Mayor,” Kirtzman delved into the life of the longtime public figure, including his emergence as a high-profile member of Trump’s political orbit.
But during the podcast, Kirtzman — who has covered Giuliani for 30 years — detailed how Trump continued to sidestep the former mayor when it came time to pick his administration’s top diplomat.
“Trump — once reality set in — actually had to decide whether to nominate Giuliani,” Kirtzman said. “He just started hearing all these negative stories about him, about his drinking. Giuliani ran this press campaign to get the job, which turned Trump off. They launched an investigation within the campaign into Giuliani’s clients, and he did. many clients with potential conflicts that had filled a report — dozens of pages — and eventually, Trump moved on.”
Giuliani has long denied having a drinking problem.
“I’m not an alcoholic,” he said during an interview with NBC New York last year. “I’m a functioner—probably functioning more effectively than 90 percent of the population.”
When asked by podcast co-host Molly Jong-Fast if Trump viewed Giuliani as “corrupt,” Kirtzman disagreed.
“I don’t think Trump saw it as corrupt. I think he saw it as a hopeless conflict,” he said.
Kirtzman during his reporting also learned of a meeting where Trump gathered many of his top advisers to get their feelings on a possible nomination for Secretary of State Giuliani.
“Trump has this meeting at Trump Tower and he gets all his top aides in one room, and it’s Jared Kushner and Hope Hicks and Reince Priebus,” Kirtzman recounts on the podcast.
He continued: “He asked for a show of hands — at the time he was considering Giuliani and Mitt Romney. And he said, ‘Okay, everybody raise your hands for Mitt Romney if you prefer him.’ And nobody did. And then he asked about Giuliani, and almost every single person in the room voted for Giuliani as Secretary of State. That’s where his star was at the time, despite people’s doubts, but Trump wasn’t convinced.”
Trump would go on to select former energy executive Rex Tillerson as his first Secretary of State, but not before hosting Romney at the Jean-Georges restaurant located inside the Trump International Hotel and Tower in New York.
The dinner produced a picture that seemed to reflect the tenuous nature of their relationship.
Kellyanne Conway, who managed Trump’s successful 2016 White House campaign and went on to serve as a senior White House adviser, strongly opposed Romney becoming Secretary of State.