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December 9, 2007

Katie Levinson: The Woman Behind Rudy Giuliani

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She's used to the fray. She was raised with two older brothers in Connecticut; their father, who worked on Wall Street, "would scream at the TV and fax the White House" if he was unhappy about politics. Later, she earned a master's degree from the London School of Economics, and eventually went on to serve as communications director for Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger's campaign.

For Levinson, the idea that female voters have special concerns, different from men's, is "curious," she says. "One of the things that's appealing about Mr. Giuliani is that he has the exact same conversation if he's sitting in front of a group of women as he would have in front of a group of men." He is "a genuine guy," she continues, noting that he doesn't act one way in public and another in private.

Giuliani speaks plainly, "from the gut," she says, adding that she has a very clear idea of what he believes in. "There's not a lot of gray." Some people say that style might backfire when it comes to foreign policy. But it works for the campaign. "Black and white is a lot easier to communicate," Levinson says. In other words, Giuliani is a communications director's dream — at least according to the woman who has the job.

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