- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 2, 2000

NEW YORK Hillary Rodham Clinton's campaign aides stepped up their ideological attacks on New York Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani yesterday, demanding that he renounce his conservative support and tell "his friends in the far right to stop their campaign of lies and deceit."
Clinton campaign spokesman Howard Wolfson and campaign Chairman Bill de Blasio said at least seven conservative groups are involved in direct-mail fund-raising appeals to support Mr. Giuliani in his expected Senate race against Mrs. Clinton.
The statement referred repeatedly to a story in the New York Daily News headlined "Anti-Hil Campaign Uncorked," which reports that letters to voters across the country describe Mrs. Clinton as a "fraud" whose election would spur the nation's "moral decay."
In a prepared statement, Mr. Wolfson called the conservative fund-raisers "a who's who list of the far right." He repeated his attack in a news conference across from City Hall.
Right-wing-versus-left-wing charges and counter-charges are emerging as a theme in the campaign.
Mrs. Clinton's forces have also renewed an earlier call on the mayor to "renounce" Joerg Haider, leader of Austria's Freedom Party, which opposes immigration and has been critical of the European Union. Mr. Giuliani, who sat on a dais with Mr. Haider two weeks ago, has ignored the criticism.
For his part, the mayor recently said Mrs. Clinton has "an extreme left-wing way" of looking at the very problems that once blighted New York City, such as high crime, homelessness and welfare.
Bruce Teitelbaum, a senior adviser to the mayor, said the ideological attack was just an attempt to divert attention from Mrs. Clinton's own problems, including questions about how much money her campaign is raising.
In another development yesterday, Michael R. Long, chairman of New York's Conservative Party, said that while his door is still open, he does not expect that Mr. Giuliani will seek his party's support in the Senate run.
"It's a calculated error," Mr. Long said. "He's making a run to the left and looking at the race in his own selfish way."
For weeks, the position of the Conservative Party has been an object of intense political speculation.
Mr. Long has said publicly that he is waiting for the mayor to ask for his endorsement, but that it would be granted only if Mr. Giuliani renounces his past support of partial-birth abortion. Mr. Giuliani has sidestepped the issue, although he is on record, as recently as last summer, as supporting President Clinton's veto of a ban on the procedure.
Since 1974, no Republican has ever won statewide office without Conservative backing. Mr. Long has pledged he could not endorse the mayor if he accepts the support of Liberal Party Chairman Ray Harding, a close adviser to Mr. Giuliani who has backed him from the start.
Yesterday, Mr. Harding was noncommittal: "I don't keep a thermometer over Mike Long and I'm nonplused by whatever he has to say about the situation, which means I don't react to what he says."

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