A recent report by New York Times correspondents delving into Rudy Giuliani’s struggles with alcohol sheds light on his penchant for excessive drinking, particularly before his appearances on Fox News. The former mayor of New York City and one-time attorney for former President Donald Trump was known to frequently indulge at the Havana Club, an exclusive members-only cigar lounge in Manhattan, just moments before going live on the conservative news network.
According to New York Times correspondents Matt Flegenheimer and Maggie Haberman, on occasions when Giuliani was overindulging, an associate discreetly signaled to other club members by mimicking a drinking motion, cautioning them to keep their distance from the inebriated former mayor. Some of Giuliani’s political allies, watching him consume Scotch before his Fox News interviews, would make a hasty exit to find a television, bracing themselves for his often impassioned defenses of Trump, which became all the more unpredictable in his inebriated state.
Even MSNBC host Rev. Al Sharpton, a fellow member of the Havana Club, joined in on what was described as a “running gag.” Members who opposed Trump playfully encouraged the club’s servers to double Giuliani’s liquor orders before his Fox News appearances, adding a layer of lighthearted mockery to the situation.
Despite Giuliani’s previous visibility on Fox News, he has been conspicuously absent from the network for several years. This absence has not gone unnoticed, with Giuliani himself frequently lamenting the situation, according to reports cited by the Times.
“On some nights when Mr. Giuliani was overserved, an associate discreetly signaled the rest of the club, tipping back his empty hand in a drinking motion, out of the former mayor’s line of sight, in case others preferred to keep their distance. Some allies, watching Mr. Giuliani down Scotch before leaving for Fox News interviews, would slip away to find a television, clenching through his rickety defenses of Mr. Trump.”
Giuliani’s struggles with alcohol have become a point of contention during various investigations, including those led by the Jan. 6 committee. Jason Miller, a senior adviser to the Trump campaign, reportedly testified before the committee that Giuliani was under the influence of alcohol on the night of the 2020 election, further highlighting the extent of his drinking problem and its impact on his public life.