Siegel: ‘Neither Morally Defensible Nor Politically Sensible’

Fred Siegel, a historian and Giuliani biographer, said the former mayor’s appearance on the campaign trail “is a very good idea but the way he’s been used is not a good idea.”

Siegel was referring to Giuliani’s appearance with Michael Bloomberg in Borough Park yesterday where the former mayor warned about a return to New York’s high crime era circa 1993 if Bloomberg weren’t re-elected.

Siegel also said Bloomberg’s reference to Detroit as an example of what could happen here is “indefensible” and stoking racial fears.

“If this isn’t a rude, racial invocation, then you don’t mention Detroit. The problem there is unsustainable pension costs. Is that what Bloomberg wants us to talk about,” said Siegel, a frequent critic of the mayor for his handling of pension costs.

Siegel said, “It’s smart to have Rudy out there, but not in this way. You want a positive appeal to draw ethnic voters to the polling place. But the overtones here are double-edged.”

He said the comments by Giuliani and Bloomberg were “neither morally defensible nor politically sensible.”