CHICAGO: With recent polls indicating that Rudy Giuliani still has popular support across the US, a new grassroots effort has emerged to convince the former New York City mayor to run for President in 2008.
The group, Draft Rudy Giuliani for President, plans to highlight how his appeal among Americans cuts across political lines. Giuliani, who served as mayor from 1994 to December 2001, was hailed for his leadership in the aftermath of 9/11.
"This is the start of a nationwide effort to show ... Giuliani the tremendous support that exists throughout the US for [his] candidacy," said Allen Fore, group cofounder and a former public affairs official for the Department of Education under President Bush.
The group's other founder is Nicholas Tyszka, head of Chicago-based PR firm T. Nicholas & Co. and a former staffer for past House majority leader Dick Armey (R-TX). Tyszka and Fore have filed the group as a PAC with the Federal Election Commission. The group has no connection to Giuliani.
The two also worked on a campaign this year to convince former Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar (R) to run for governor in 2006 against Democratic incumbent Rod Blagojevich. Edgar, however, announced two months ago that he would not run.
The group, which launched its website earlier this month, plans to mine its e-mail lists for potential supporters and to publish a newsletter. The group also will raise money for ads to promote Giuliani.
Campaigns also exist to draft Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-NY) and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice to run for President.
"We're not unique in what we're doing, but I think we're probably being a little more aggressive about it," Fore said.