The highlight speaker at a political dinner that led to heartburn for Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker wasn't even scheduled, says Newsmax contributor John Fund, who was in the seats on Wednesday at New York's "21" Club when Rudy Giuliani pulled a Kanye West — unexpectedly grabbing the microphone to question President Barack Obama's patriotism.
"Rudy Giuliani showed up as a gate crasher five minutes before it began," National Review Online columnist Fund told "America's Forum" with JD Hayworth
on Newsmax TV
Monday. "He immediately seized the microphone and made those comments. He was trying to make news even though the dinner was off the record."
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Obama "wasn't brought up the way you were brought up and I was brought up through love of this country," former New York Mayor Giuliani,
who ran for president in 2008, said as guests including 2016 Republican prospect Walker — who was dining with potential campaign donors — looked on.
Fund said that initial reports of what Giuliani said
— and has sought to explain — are accurate.
"He did say he didn't think the president loved America," said Fund. "That was a mistake. I don't think you can shoot from the lip about someone's inner motives. And he created a firestorm that hasn't helped anyone and has reduced the public discourse to a less civil tone."
Besides putting Walker and other Republican hopefuls
in an awkward spot, Fund said that Giuliani, with his comments, also "detracted from some legitimate criticisms that one can make about the president."
"Last week, when the president was talking about his executive actions opening up the border to up to 5 million illegals, he said many of these people are as American as you and I, they just lack legal papers," said Fund. "This is just astonishing. The president's idea of American exceptionalism is apparently everyone is an American — the only thing differing between one American and the other is some piece of paper.
"That's the kind of thing we need to go after, not whether he loves or hates America," he said.
By demanding that other Republicans repudiate Giuliani's remarks, the news media are scrutinizing the political rhetoric of one party only, said Fund.
"Debbie Wasserman Schultz said Scott Walker has been so much against women's rights, he's pulled their hair back," said Fund. "Joe Biden says an outrageous thing every week. Are Democrats all over the country being asked what do you think about that?
"The double standard becomes a triple standard with a backflip … it becomes 'gotcha' on every Republican who's running for any office while the Democrats basically get way Scott free," said Fund. "Even George Stephanopoulos even admitted on Sunday there is a double standard."
Fund also discussed an Associated Press poll
that found Americans want the rich to pay higher taxes. Fund countered with year-over-year findings in "Reader's Digest" on what Americans of all income levels believe should be the highest tax rate for everybody.
"Consistently, over 20 years of this poll, the high point has been 25 percent," said Fund. "The American people have an inmate sense of fairness."
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