Rudy, we hardly knew you. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani and close friend to President-elect Donald Trump will not be serving in the new administration. The surprise announcement on Friday stated that Giuliani had removed himself from consideration for any position in the new administration.
Giuliani had been rumored to be in the mix for secretary of State, but the former mayor said, “This is not about me; it is about what is best for the country and the new administration. Before I joined the campaign I was very involved and fulfilled by my work with my law firm and consulting firm, and I will continue that work with even more enthusiasm.”
The real reason may be more than that. Giuliani may have fallen out of favor with Trump with his refusal to accept an appointment to head Homeland Security last month. He may have also raised Trump’s ire with his sense of entitlement for his long hours on the campaign trail.
Nevertheless, an obviously disappointed Giuliani gracefully added, “From the vantage point of the private sector, I look forward to helping the President-elect in any way he deems necessary and appropriate.” It was a surprising end to any involvement in the Trump administration officially.
CNN was the first network to report the obvious; Trump had informed the former New York City mayor that he had been removed from consideration for the Secretary of State job. It had been clear that was the position Giuliani had lobbied for.
The latest rumors have ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson now leading the pack of candidates. Tillerson is familiar with dozens of foreign countries and their oil ministers, presidents, finance ministers, etc. His worldly experience is a far cry from Giuliani’s experience as a former federal prosecutor and New York City Mayor.
Trump concluded Giuliani’s swan song with his new administration praising him in a statement for his devotion to the campaign and his “extremely wise counsel.” He added, “He is and continues to be a close personal friend, and as appropriate, I will call upon him for advice and can see an important place for him in the administration at a later date.”
Giuliani’s demise may be attributed to his questionable consulting work for foreign governments. However, Reince Priebus, Trump’s chief of staff, said in a statement included in the transition team’s announcement that Giuliani “was vetted by our team for any possible conflicts and passed with flying colors.”
That may have been true, but Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), whose position on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee gives him influence over the State confirmation process, fiercely opposed Giuliani’s potential nomination last month. That could have been a contributing factor in the mayor’s removal from the potential list of Secretary of State candidates.
Left on the short list aside from Tillerson is former CIA Director Gen. David Petraeus, retired Adm. James Stavridis, 2012 GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and former Ford CEO Alan Mulally for secretary of State. It seems the candidacy of former UN Ambassador John Bolton is off the table along with Giuliani.