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Giuliani and Roe


Somehow I missed a St. Petersburg Times story from earlier this month that sheds some light on the claims that Giuliani’s social-conservative supporters are making for him.

Bruce F. Berg, who chairs the political science department at Fordham University, has an archive that may be the envy of anyone interested in New York City politics. It documents every mayoral news conference in the city dating back to 1996.

Berg has DVDs of what was said and how they said it, covering all but the first two years of the Rudy Giuliani era.

Does he have any records of Giuliani speaking about a program to reduce abortions by encouraging adoptions?

“They don’t exist,” says Berg, who used the database in writing his new book, New York City Politics: Governing Gotham, a thorough analysis of the city’s major institutions.

So Giuliani made a big point of promoting adoption over abortion, without ever saying anything about it. And then there’s this:

Mary Alice Carr, vice president for Communications at NARAL Pro-Choice New York, still has a proclamation signed by Giuliani that made Jan. 22, 1998 “Roe v. Wade Anniversary Day” in the city. She also provided a copy of a NARAL questionnaire from 1997, signed by Giuliani.

Would he support unrestricted Medicaid funding for abortions? Would he oppose legislation that made minors get parental or court approval before getting an abortion? Did he agree with the Roe v. Wade decision?

Giuliani circled Yes, Yes and Yes.

But don’t worry: He’s a “strict constructionist.” Sure.


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