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President Trump's personal attorney Rudy Giuliani took on the "unprecedented wave of lawlessness" that has swept across the U.S. at the RNC Thursday night, accusing the Black Lives Matter movement and Antifa of turning peaceful protests into "vicious, brutal riots."

Why it matters: As mayor of New York City, Giuliani was famous for championing a controversial record of crime-fighting, including policies like stop-and-frisk. He tore into his successor Bill De Blasio for allowing crime to rise in New York, and accused Joe Biden of being a "Trojan horse" for progressives "waiting to execute their pro-criminal, anti-police, socialist policies."

The big picture: As Trump's personal attorney, Giuliani became mired in scandal after seeking to pressure the Ukrainian government to investigate Joe and Hunter Biden. He was reported to be under criminal investigation by federal prosecutors in New York last year.

What he's saying: "New York City, once described as America’s Crime Capital, had become by the mid-1990s America’s safest large city. Now today my city is in shock. Murders, shootings and violent crime are increasing at percentages unheard of in the past. We are seeing the return of rioting and looting," Giuliani said.

  • "The whole unprecedented wave of lawlessness began with a truly just cause the unforgiveable police killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis on May 25, 2020. Peaceful protests began all over the land. ... It seemed for a ‘a few brief shining moments’ like Democrat and Republican leaders would come together with a unified proposal to reduce police misconduct."
  • "This possibility was very dangerous to the Left. They had a President to beat and a country to destroy, and although a bi-partisan coalition agreeing on action against police brutality would be very valuable for the country, it would also make President Trump appear to be an effective leader. So, BLM and ANTIFA sprang into action and in a flash hijacked the protests into vicious, brutal riots."

The bottom line: "If Biden is elected, along with the Democrats who are unwilling to speak out against this anarchy, then the crime wave will intensify and spread from cities and towns to suburbs and beyond," Giuliani argued. "I have no doubt, and I’m sure you don’t, when President Trump is re-elected the damage will stop."

Go deeper

Nov 29, 2020 - World

Clashes in Paris as tens of thousands protest France security bill

Demonstrators in Paris protest on Saturday France's "global security" draft law. Photo: Thomas Coex/AFP via Getty Images

A massive protest in Paris against a security bill descended into clashes between police and demonstrators Saturday, as tens of thousands of people rallied across France against the measure, per AFP.

Why it matters: The bill, if signed into law, would bolster government surveillance and restrict the sharing of images of police officers, which critics say would erode civil liberties including the freedom to report on police brutality.

Collins helps contractor before pro-Susan PAC gets donation

Sen. Susan Collins during her reelection campaign. Photo: Scott Eisen/Getty Images

A PAC backing Sen. Susan Collins in her high-stakes reelection campaign received $150,000 from an entity linked to the wife of a defense contractor whose firm Collins helped land a federal contract, new public records show.

Why it matters: The executive, Martin Kao of Honolulu, leaned heavily on his political connections to boost his business, federal prosecutors say in an ongoing criminal case against him. The donation linked to Kao was veiled until last week.

How cutting GOP corporate cash could backfire

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Companies pulling back on political donations, particularly to members of Congress who voted against certifying President Biden's election win, could inadvertently push Republicans to embrace their party's rightward fringe.

Why it matters: Scores of corporate PACs have paused, scaled back or entirely abandoned their political giving programs. While designed to distance those companies from events that coincided with this month's deadly siege on the U.S. Capitol, research suggests the moves could actually empower the far-right.