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Giuliani Sees Policy Role for Wife

Former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani with wife Judith, who is a registered nurse.
Former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani with wife Judith, who is a registered nurse. (By Mario Tama -- Getty Images)

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By Michael D. Shear and Zachary A. Goldfarb
Friday, March 30, 2007

Former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani told ABC News's Barbara Walters that he would welcome his wife, Judith, at White House Cabinet meetings and other policy discussions if he were elected president next year.

"If she wanted to," Giuliani said in the "20/20" interview to be broadcast tonight. "If they were relevant to something that she was interested in. I mean that would be something that I'd be very, very comfortable with."

Giuliani, who is leading the Republican field in early polling, called his wife an important adviser to him. His wife, a nurse, said that she would probably play an important role in developing health-care policy in a Giuliani administration.

In the interview, Judith Giuliani also addressed her husband's public breakup with his most recent former wife, her relationship with Giuliani's son, and the former mayor's fight to overcome prostate cancer. This is the third marriage for both.

Romney Mentions Possible Running Mates

Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney let slip yesterday the names of a few people he might consider for the vice presidency should he win the Republican presidential nomination.

Speaking to a group of supporters in South Carolina, Romney floated the names of three Southerners: South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford, former House speaker Newt Gingrich (Ga.) and former Florida governor Jeb Bush. "There's some wonderful people right here in this state, as you know," he told the crowd, according to the Associated Press.

Romney said he hasn't "given a lot of thought" to the choice of a running mate, which likely wouldn't be made until sometime next summer. He later expanded on his remarks, telling reporters that the names he mentioned for the No. 2 spot are part of a list that any candidate would have to consider.

Jesse Jackson Backs Obama's Bid

Jesse L. Jackson said yesterday that he is supporting Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) in his 2008 presidential bid, but he refrained from encouraging others to do the same.

"I will vote for him because he is from my state," Jackson, a civil rights leader who is influential in the African American community, said in an interview. "He has the intelligence and the integrity and the strength of reasoning to make a tremendous impact. He has already inspired many people to get involved."

Obama and Sen. Hillary Rodman Clinton (D-N.Y.) have been battling vigorously for the support of black voters. Jackson said he does not plan to join Obama's campaign yet.

Jackson ran for president in 1984 and 1988. Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr. (D-Ill.), his son, has also endorsed Obama.

Obama is running to become the first African American president, but some have raised questions about his ability to connect with the experience of many black voters. Obama, who graduated from Columbia and Harvard, has a white mother from Kansas and a Kenyan father.

Clinton and her husband, former president Bill Clinton, have enjoyed an excellent relationship with Jackson, who said he will work with all candidates on issues such as fighting urban poverty and advancing racial equality.

"I'm not in any candidate's debt. I'm the creditor," Jackson said.

Third-Party Movement Drafts Its Rules

Unity08 took another step yesterday toward its 2008 goal of running a presidential ticket consisting of one Republican and one Democrat.

The group, which was formed last spring, released a set of draft rules that would govern the recruitment of candidates and the June 2008 online nominating convention that would produce a ticket.

"We're creating a new party. We're devising a new way of thinking about issues," said Doug Bailey, a Unity08 co-founder and founder of the Hotline political tipsheet. "We're talking about a national online convention that's never been held before. We're talking about putting together a national unity ticket."

The draft rules, available on the group's Web site ( http://www.unity08.com), say that people who sign up as delegates would be able to encourage candidates to run by signing up other delegates on their behalf even before the would-be candidates have expressed interest in a Unity08 endorsement.


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