Andrew Giuliani had the identification name and his famous father. He just didn’t have the votes.

“I always said I was going to be genuine with the voters,” he said in an interview Wednesday with POLITICO. “Whether you voted for me or not, you can at least say that I was honest and as genuine as possible.”

The young Giuliani was determined that his father’s outsized role in the campaign and his support for Trump would not hurt his chances.

“Look, I’m not going to shy away from the fact that I worked four years for President Trump, and I’m certainly proud of my father and his many accomplishments. So if that had a positive effect, if it had a negative effect on voters, I’ll let other people look at it.”

If this year’s Republican primary is any barometer of the continued prominence of the Trump brand in the party, the New York race was unique in that it extended to the legacy of its most colorful attorney, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani.

And an initial conclusion after Rep. Lee Zeldin comfortable victory is that Giuliani’s name still hitsbut not as difficult as before.

Andrew Giuliani, 36, was in second place by more than 20 percentage points behind party favorite Zeldin. But young Giuliani he still carried most of his hometown of New Yorkshowing regional if not state influence.

The state holiday this year sought a certain distance of Trump. Not so with Giuliani. Although he never held elected office, Giuliani based his campaign on his years working as an adviser in the Trump White House and the regular presence of his father on the campaign trail.

Asked what Andrew Giuliani’s performance in the race indicated about Trump and Rudy Giuliani’s continued influence among Republicans, state GOP Chairman Nick Langworthy said the family legacy has paved the way for the candidate. , who said he “had an admirable career”.

“Listen, Mayor Giuliani was our leader on 9/11,” Langworthy said. “He Certainly he is well known and well regarded by many, and that name carries a lot of strength. Andrew is a fresh young face, and I think he has a bright future ahead of him.”

Giuliani’s campaign turned out better than some expected, with his favoritism among Republican voters vote near or above Zeldin throughout the campaign despite considerable discrepancies in funding and endorsements.

To the surprise of some prepared for a more combative Trump brand, Giuliani revealed himself as an affable candidate, regularly accessible to the media and with a good-natured openness to new experiences, such as make friends with bovines in the middle of an upstate bull semen auction.

During one debate, he tried to parlay his opponents’ more laborious accusations of lying, imploring Zeldin and businessman Harry Wilson: “Let’s be grown up here, guys. Let’s talk about the problems.”

He boldly appealed to the right wing of the party, suggesting that he believed Trump’s false claims that he won the 2020 election. He promised to emulate both Trump and his father if elected, and while he didn’t get Trump’s explicit endorsement, he did win. the blessing of Trump confidants such as Steve Bannon, who described him as “born from the sand of two warriors.”

He was only able to attend one of the three televised debates in person because he is not vaccinated against covid-19.

But it was his father who carried the most sensational headlines until the final hours of the campaign, reporting an apparently exaggerated aggression from a Staten Island ShopRite employee while looking for her son over the weekend.

The primary also coincided with a day in which the legacy of the former president was further damaged. amid new complaints that Trump attempted to join the violent insurrection at the US Capitol on January 6, 2021.

Even GOP leaders say Rudy Giuliani’s presence may have had negative effects on their son: Some GOP voters might have been happy to revisit a new generation of the Giuliani brand, but others might have been put off by endless ties. with Trump and his scandal. marked tenure in the White House.

“Some of the trouble he got into over the last five years might have hurt a little bit, even with our base. I’m not saying much, but I could have,” said Bernie Iacovangelo, chairman of the Monroe County Republican Party.

The more practical factor was that Andrew Giuliani, whom Iacovangelo called “a wonderful young man” with “a bright future,” had no political experience compared to Zeldin, a former state senator now in his fourth term in Congress.

When it came to rallying support for the expected low-turnout primary, party officials were pushing votes toward their preferred candidate, Zeldin. So the Republican voters who might have quickly checked a box for Giuliani just because of the association of his name might have been among those who stayed home, said former congressman and GOP gubernatorial candidate John Faso.

“People who vote in a primary know who they are voting for ahead of time,” Faso said. “It’s not someone who walks in hesitantly and says there’s a name in there that I recognize. It’s a different kind of voter than a general election voter.”

And Andrew Giuliani still finished far ahead of former Westchester County Executive Rob Astorino, who was running for governor for the second time, and Wilson, who spent at least $6 million of his own money on the race. Giuliani probably raised and spent no more than $1 million.

During his concession speech, Giuliani quickly implored his supporters to “lick our wounds tonight,” but tomorrow “let’s stand up and support the Republican candidate, Congressman Lee Zeldin, and make him the 58th governor of New York State.”

He is planning to be in New York politics for a while, he said. And he promised to continue fighting “as the Rudy Giuliani and the Donald Trumps have fought to give us a better city and a better country.”

That was always Plan B, he said Wednesday. He is no longer the rambunctious child made famous when he was played by the late Chris Farley in Saturday night live climbing on the podium at his father’s inauguration as mayor in 1994.

“When I talked to Lee at the beginning of his campaign, I said, ‘Look, you know, we’re going to work together for the next decade to help New York State,'” Andrew Giuliani said Wednesday.

“We’re going to have a little brotherly fight here over the next year, but whoever ends up winning, if it comes out the other way around, I’ll be sure to back them.”

Joe Spector contributed reporting.

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