CBN News — Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani is responding to the firestorm he started last week when he said he doesn’t think President Barack Obama loves the United States.
Critics on the left have blasted him for the comment.
But in a Wall Street Journal op-ed Sunday, titled “My Bluntness Overshadowed My Message,” Giuliani did not back down from his overall theme.
He said he made the comment, in part, because Obama has argued that America is not “exceptional.”
“To say, as the president has, that American exceptionalism is no more exceptional than the exceptionalism of any other country in the world, does not suggest a becoming and endearing modesty, but rather a stark lack of moral clarity,” Giuliani wrote.
“Irrespective of what a president may think or feel, his inability or disinclination to emphasize what is right with America can hamstring our success as a nation. This is particularly true when a president is seen, as President Obama is, as criticizing his country more than other presidents have done,” Giuliani said.
“I hope and pray that President Obama can rise to the occasion and underscore America’s greatness as our history and values merit. If he does so, I will be the first to applaud him,” he continued.
But Giuliani took his critique to another level in an interview Friday with the New York Post, stating that the president had been heavily influenced by “critics of the U.S.” during his early years.
He pointed to the fact that Obama’s grandfather took him to be mentored by a communist named Frank Marshall Davis and noted that Obama also allowed himself to be influenced by socialist community organizer Saul Alinsky.
After Giuliani’s original comment questioning whether Obama loved America, an ABC News reporter asked White House press secretary Josh Earnest if he thought the former New York mayor had “lost it.”
Earnest responded, “Anytime…that there is somebody who has attained a certain level of public stature and even admiration in some cases, to see that person so thoroughly tarnish their legacy, it’s, it’s sad.”
Earnest went on to defend the president, saying Obama used the phrase “God bless this country we love” during his State of the Union address.
Meanwhile, Connecticut Gov. Dannel Malloy blasted Giuliani for making a “despicable statement,” and launched an attack against all future Republican presidential candidates.
“No one in their right mind can question that the president loves this country,” Malloy said. “For possible candidates for president who have not rejected outright what Mr. Giuliani said about our president speaks volumes about them as well.”
The news media picked up that message and went after Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, a possible GOP candidate.
When pressed, Rubio replied, “Democrats aren’t called on to answer for every time Joe Biden says something embarrassing, so I don’t know why I should answer for every time a Republican does. Suffice it to say that I think the president loves America; I just think his ideas are bad.”
Report via CBN News