Rudy Giuliani seems to be the Republican frontrunner in the race for presidentship of the United States of America. The former mayor from New York City won praise for his deft handling of the emergency during the September 11 attacks. Certainly, in frequent radio and television appearances, Giuliani was often shown to be in the thick of the smoke and debris on Ground Zero, personally supervising rescue and evacuation work. His statements, echoing the sentiments of shock and anger, also reassured shaken New Yorkers, who saw in his resolute refusal to cow down before the horrific attacks, a heroic display of "strength through leadership".
September 11 remains Giuliani's trump card. Regardless of what he may say, it remains the center point of the candidacy of the man who has been popularly dubbed as "Americaís Mayor". References to 9/11 and the leadership role he played during the crisis, figures prominently in his campaign speeches.
However, controversy has erupted regarding some of the claims made by Rudy Giuliani. For instance, Giuliani's claim that he was on the Ground Zero site, " as often, if not more" than the rescue workers, and that he was exposed to the same dangers as they
were, has drawn opposition. But Giuliani's appointment logs, six days from the day of the tragedy, confirm his presence at the site for a mere twenty-nine hours over a period of three months.
Jim Riches, Deputy Fire Chief of the New York City Fire Department, has termed Giuliani's campaign as "horrible" and "disgusting". He says Giuliani is distorting the truth and misleading voters. Speaking about Giuliani, Riches says, "He didnít prepare the first responders for a terrorist attack. The Office of Emergency Management was a joke that day. There was a lack of communication. People died unnecessarily."