Editor's note: This is part of a series of campaign snapshots in advance of the Democrat and Republican presidential primary debates in Manchester, scheduled June 3 and 5, respectively.
For months after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack on New York City, Rudy Giuliani was singled out for his heroic actions in leading that city out of the chaos that attack created. At the time he was dubbed "America's Mayor."
However, now that he is running for the Republican nomination for president, the bloom is disappearing from the former New York City mayor's rose.
As Giuliani prepares for another national appearance in the Republican debate in Manchester on June 5, he faces considerable challenges on his political right and left.
Conservatives around the country are gearing up to either force Giuliani to withdraw from the race or to defeat him in either the primary or general election. The issue for these voters is Giuliani's pro-gun control, pro-choice, pro-gay rights positions.
To his credit, the former New York City mayor has never shied away from those positions, although they are not part of his planned speeches and are only discussed if the audience asks about them. Giuliani prefers to speak about supporting the war on terrorism and his financial management skills honed managing what could be the most complex city in the nation.
However, Democrats are taking a hard look at the former mayor's record in New York and coming away dissatisfied. The Democratic National Committee challenged Giuliani's claims that he is a fiscal conservative, citing an Associated Press article written in April that indicated New York City income taxes rose 40 percent and property tax revenues went up 12.7 percent on his watch.
The DNC also claimed Giuliani increased total spending on city government by 35.6 percent.
The former mayor has visited the state several times, but has come to the Seacoast only twice. New Hampshire residents have yet to get a good look at Giuliani or to hold the kind of open give and take that will eventually determine if he is a viable presidential candidate.