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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Giuliani: 'We have just announced uncle'



Rudy Appearing before 100 Republicans in Tallahassee, Rudy Giuliani cast himself as the leader needed to defend the U.S. against further terrorist attacks. He blasted efforts in Washington to pull out of Iraq. "When in the history of war has a retreating country or army printed out a schedule of their retreat and handed it to their enemy? … We have just announced 'uncle,' " he said during a 32-minute speech at the Governor's Club.

Giuliani mostly hewed to GOP themes - lower taxes, economic expansion - but offered a nuanced approach to embryonic stem cell research. There should be restrictions against cloning and no "impetus of any kind to produce embryos for that purpose," but "I do think we can't stand in the way of science."

There was not an overwhelming number of elected officials in the crowd and the speech was met with what mostly seemed like polite applause. (Some lawmakers are still traveling back to the capital after a few days off). Rep. Dennis Baxley, who did show up, called Giuliani "a great American hero," but said he's not the right candidate. "He's just not going to be able to pass the smell test when it comes to the values issue." Baxley is behind Mitt Romney. Rep. Thad Altman, however, said as a conservative he has no qualms supporting Giuliani.

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 1:41pm]


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