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Rudy Giuliani’s campaign released its 4th quarter fundraising figures today, which show that Mr. 9/11 spent $48.9 million through last December 31. In light of that figure (which of course does not include millions of dollars more that Giuliani spent during the past month), let’s review the collapse of Rudy’s campaign, which ranks as one of the most spectacular political humiliations in recent American history.
Rudy, the long-time GOP frontrunner, debuted with voters on January 3 in Iowa. He won 3 percent support (4,097 voters) to finish 6th, trouncing Duncan Hunter by a margin of 8 to 1–but unfortunately losing to everyone else on the ballot, including Ron Paul, who beat him by almost 3 to 1. At the Wyoming county conventions two days later, Rudy tied for last with 0 percent of the vote. (Wyoming did not release vote totals, only percentages.)
Next up was New Hampshire, where Rudy rocketed to a 9 percent share of the vote, good enough for fourth place. In Michigan, he dropped to 3 percent and took 6th place, again finishing well ahead of Hunter and narrowly edging out “Uncommitted” (who had two percent) as well.
In Nevada on January 19th Rudy took 6th again, with 4 percent of the vote. A week later he polled two percent in South Carolina, securing 6th again. Then came Florida, where he delivered his peak performance, winning 3rd place with 15 percent.
Now let’s summarize:
Rudy spent $142.83 for every vote he received. And again, that is based on campaign spending only through December 31. The real number will go higher when 2008 spending figures are released.
All of this puts Rudy in a league with Phil Gramm and John Connally, two past lavishly financed GOP presidential flameouts (in 1996 and 1980, respectively). But Rudy’s crash was even more stunning. Gramm and Connally were both deemed to be serious contenders, but neither was ever anointed the decisive frontrunner like Rudy.
Farewell, Rudy. You won’t, it seems, be missed.
More from Ken Silverstein:
Perspective — October 23, 2013, 8:00 am
How pro-oil Louisiana politicians have shaped American environmental policy
Postcard — October 16, 2013, 8:00 am
A trip to one of the properties at issue in Louisiana’s oil-pollution lawsuits
Chances that a deep breath inhaled today will contain a molecule from Julius Caesar’s dying breath:
Innumeracy: Mathematical Illiteracy and Its Consequences, by John Allen Paulos, Hill and Wang (N.Y.C.)
The earth once had three moons; the two lost moons may have crashed into the surviving moon, or been sucked into the sun, or flung out of the solar system to drift through deep space.
In Florida, an 87-year-old World War II veteran flying touch-and-go drills in a Cessna collided with an airborne skydiver. “There was a ‘woof’ sound,” said a witness, “like falling on your face into your pillow.”
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“American politics has often been an arena for angry minds.”