Rudy Giuliani

Rudolph W. Giuliani


  • J.D., cum laude, New York University School of Law, 1968. [1]
  • B.A., Manhattan College, 1965. [1]


Rudolph (Rudy) Giuliani served as the Mayor of New York City for two terms, from 1994 through 2001, and was a 2008 Republican presidential candidate. He is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Giuliani Partners LLC, which he founded in January, 2002. He was appointed the Associate Attorney General under President Reagan in 1981. [2], [3]

When Giuliani launched his presidential bid in 2007, Time magazine dubbed him an “honorary Texas oil lawyer.” By October of that year, he had raised more than half a million dollars from the oil and gas industry, more than the next two top recipients combined. Giuliani began work at Bracewell & Patterson—later renamed Bracewell & Giuliani—in 2005. During his presidential bid, over $14,000 of his total campaign dollars came from the oil refiner Valero Energy, one of Bracewell & Giuliani’s clients. Giuliani left Bracewell & Giuliani in January, 2016, and the firm subsequently rebranded itself as Bracewell. [4], [5], [6]

Giuliani appeared to reflect his client’s interests on the campaign trail and beyond. Over 2007 and 2008, Giuliani indicated he would open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil drilling, came out against fuel economy mandates for cars, said the United States would be “better off if we could rely somewhat more on our coal reserves” in order to achieve energy independence, and supported coal-to-fuel synthesis, believing it could be “a very valuable contributor” to said independence. [7], [8], [9]

Giuliani Declined Positions in Trump Administration

Before making the surprise announcement that he was pulling out of consideration for a cabinet post in the Trump administration, Giuliani was one of the contenders for the position of Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton’s former position in the Obama administration. The Secretary of State position entails power over approving cross-border pipelines and other fossil fuel infrastructure, as well as advancing the administration’s energy policy. [10], [11], [12]

Giuliani’s deep financial ties to the oil and gas industry are a major red flag; nominating him as Secretary of State would be another deeply disturbing move by President-elect Trump,” says League of Conservation Voters Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Tiernan Sittenfield.  [13]

Trump’s consideration of Rudy Giuliani for secretary of state, with all of his ties to the fossil fuel industry, is par for the disastrous course the President-elect is setting,” says Dani Heffernan, US Communication Coordinator at “Giuliani isn’t an outright climate denier, but his deep loyalties to the fossil fuel industry pose a threat to international action against climate change and, ultimately, a livable future.” [13]

Politico reports that Giulani confirmed president-elect Trump had offered him two “Cabinet-level positions” in government, and that he had turned down the positions because he “didn’t want to do it.” [14]

While he declined to name the positions, he did say that they were “very high” and did not include the top job at state. Giulani dismissed suggestions that his decisions had been based on inadequate loyalty by Trump: “As far as I’m concerned, he fulfilled whatever loyalty that entails,” Giuliani said, referencing the two other job offers he said he received. “I mean, it was my own decision not to do it, largely because of my personal life.” [14]

Fossil Fuel Ties & Lobbying

When Rudy Giuliani joined Bracewell & Patterson in 2005, expanding the firm’s New York office, it already had the reputation of being the firm of choice for major energy companies. In 2007, the New York Times called Bracwell & Patterson “perhaps the nation’s most aggressive lobbyist for coal-fired power plants, heavy emitters of air pollutants and carbon dioxide,” arguing it was “central to rolling back environmental regulations in the Bush years,” such as provisions of the Clean Air Act.  [15], [16], [17][5]

Some of the firm’s largest legal clients have included Shell Oil, and Chevron/Texaco. Bracewell & Giuliani helped Shell acquire 618,000 acres of the Permian Basin in 2012 from the Chesapeake Energy Corporation—itself a major client, and one that gave the firm hundreds of thousands of dollars for lobbying work from 2011-2015. [18], [19], [20], [21]

Chevron/Texaco is a multinational energy company that, according to Forbes, is the 28th biggest public company in the world and the United States’ second biggest oil and gas producer, worth $192 billion. Chevron was responsible for one spill that released more than 18 billion gallons of oil and other waste into the Ecuadorian Amazon—30 times larger than the 1989 Exxon Valdez spill. [22], [23], [24], [25]

Other notable fossil fuel clients included Saudi Arabia’s oil ministry (despite Giuliani’s rejection of a $10 million donation from a Saudi prince after the September 11 attacks), Citgo (Venezuela’s state-owned oil company, which spent more than $5 million since 2014 lobbying against U.S. sanctions), and Pacific Gas & Electric, California’s largest utility, which was found guilty of violating safety regulations prior to a pipeline explosion that killed eight people and destroyed 38 homes. Bracewell represented the company in the case. [26], [27], [28], [29]

Lobbying Clients

According to public lobbying disclosures, Giuliani’s firms have a long history with the energy industry with clients like Arch Coal and Chesapeake Energy. Tyson Slocum, director of Public Citizen’s Energy Program said that “Bracewell & Giuliani was probably the most premier energy lobbying firm in the 2000s.” [13][5]

Bracewell & Giuliani also lobbied for 11 years for Southern Company, a company vehemently opposed to the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan and once ranked “the United States’ most irresponsible utility.” The firm also lobbied for gas and coal power plant operator Dynegy, frequently criticized for it’s air-polluting power plants, for seven years. GenOn Energy, which has racked up thousands of violations of federal and state water laws over the years, retained the firm as lobbyists for the same amount of time. [30], [31], [32], [33]

There is significant overlap between the firm and the Electric Reliability Coordinating Council, a coalition of energy companies which opposes environmental legislation. The group’s director, Scott Segal, is a partner at Bracewell & Giuliani. [34]

Jeff Holmstead, who in 2010 was referred to by the ERCC as its counsel, is also a partner at the firm (though as this transcript of his Senate testimony shows, he hasn’t always disclosed this connection). [35], [36], [37]

While the ERCC has not revealed its full member list, some of its members are known to be Duke Energy, Salt River Project, and Southern Company, though it has also done work for mining company Arch Coal. These all were or still are Bracewell & Giuliani clients. At the same time, the ERCC has not only been one of Bracewell & Giuliani’s oldest clients, starting with the firm in 2001, but one of its most lucrative, too, paying out more than $1 million a year to the firm since 2008, dwarfing every other client listed. [38]

Giuliani left Bracewell & Giuliani in January 2016, moving to Greenberg Traurig, another firm maintaining a range of connections to the fossil fuel industry, as well as the pharmaceutical industry, with clients including Peabody Energy, Bayer Corporation, Colorado Interstate Gas, FPL Energy, General Motors Corporation, Generic Pharmaceutical Association, Golden Queen Mining Company, Business Roundtable, and others. [39], [5]

The firm has a close relationship to oil and gas producer El Paso Corporation, which is owned by Kinder Morgan. Greenbert Traurig lobbied for two of the company’s subsidiaries, El Paso Electric and El Paso Pipeline Group, from 2005 through 2013. [40]

There is a revolving door between the two entities, with one of Greenberg Traurig’s attorneys becoming vice president, legal and chief compliance officer at El Paso Electric (then CEO) of El Paso Electric. El Paso Corporation’s senior counsel of 15 years moved to Greenberg Traurig in 2014. One of the firm’s lawyers, serving as the company’s general counsel for nearly a decade also rejoined Greenberg Traurig in 2013. [41], [42], [43], [44]

Some of Bracewell & Giuliani’s notable lobbying clients are below. View the attached spreadsheet for additional details on Bracewell & Giuliani’s lobbying by year (.xlsx)[5]

It isn’t clear what Giulini’s own personal involvement with many of these companies was. Giuliani himself has never registered as a lobbyist, and he’s not listed as an attorney in legal cases involving the companies. In 2006, Newsday reported that Giuliani personally sat down with Shell executives, part of his role of “solidifying existing relationships” with the firm. It’s also worth noting that when working for his private consulting firm, Giuliani Partners, the former mayor regularly did lobbying work for his clients without ever registering himself as such, possibly because he didn’t technically meet the threshold of salaried time spent communicating with officials. [45], [46]

Tyson Slocum says whether or not Giuliani was directly involved with some of these companies is beside the point:

It would be one thing if you had some minor role,” he says. “It’s another when one of the world’s largest lobbying groups renames itself after you.”  [13]

Stance on Climate Change


Talking about a potential Carbon Tax on CNBC: [47]

“I don’t like taxes. I don’t know how to make that any clearer. I don’t like taxes. I generally think taxes are, given the level of taxation we have, and a lot of our states and in the country, inventing new ones is a very big mistake. Find other ways to do it. 

If you want to deal with global warming, the way to deal with global warming is to develop these alternative technologies. Really get serious about energy independence, which we should probably have been serious about 30 years ago. We wouldn’t be in this situation where we have to send money to our enemies.”

“Get serous about why we haven’t licensed a new nuclear power plant in 30 years. Because people are afraid of nuclear power.  […] Nobody’s died from nuclear power.” […]

“I look at wind and solar from the point of view of, can we store that energy? Right now it’s inconsistent energy. When the wind is blowing, you get energy. When it isn’t, you don’t. Is there a way to develop a technology that you can store it? Can you clean coal? Carbon sequestration: it can be done. Can we expand it?

The other benefit of looking at it this way, which I consider a pro-growth way, is we move ourselves towards energy independence then we also create an industry. A new industry in America. And with the growth of China and the growth of India, if we’re at the head of that industry we”re going to make a lot of money in China and we’re going to make a lot of money in india. We won’t just be buying things from them; they’ll be buying things from us.”

In the same interview, Giuliani discusses the Kyoto Protocol and global warming:

“It would move [jobs] to China and India and it would have no impact on global warming. Whatever your scientific conclusion about global warming, whether it’s man-made, or it isn’t or whatever, the reality is that if you don’t have restrictions on China and you don’t have restrictions on India, our contribution ultimately is going to be minor. We could put all these restrictions on ourselves and have just as much arguable global warming if China, India—some of these other countries that are going to be contributing a lot more to this don’t become part of some sort of system […]”

October 2007

Grist reports that while Giulani said “I do believe there’s global warming,” on the campaign trail, in a later speech on energy in the summer in Waterloo, Iowa, he had hardly a word about the environment. Instead, he focused on tapping domestic sources of energy, including coal, which is considered a major contributor to global warming. [48]

Key Quotes

December 13, 2016

Speaking of Exxonmobil CEO Rex Tillerson’s appointment as secretary of state: [49]

“I’m okay with the choice. I think Donald Trump has selected somebody who knows the world and can advise him on the world.”

July 2016

Rudy Giulani applauded Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention [50]

“”It’s time to make America safe again. It’s time to make America one again […] What I did for New York, Donald Trump will do for America!”

“Donald Trump has said the first step in defeating our enemies is to identify them properly and see the connections between them,” Giuliani said. “To defeat Islamic extremist terrorism we must put them on defense. If they are at war against us ― which they have declared ― we must commit ourselves to unconditional victory against them.”

“This includes undoing one of the worst deals America ever made ― Obama’s Nuclear Agreement with Iran that will eventually let them become a nuclear power and put billions of dollars back into a country that the world’s biggest state sponsor of terrorism.”

September 2015

Speaking at the annual Shale Insight conference, Rudy Giulani argued the natural gas industry was “not being supported by the national government in the way that it should be.” He told the audience of industry members that many people were “irrationally afraid” of fracking, and the industry needed to launch “a national effort to explain how relatively safe this process was.” [54] 

February 2015

“I do not believe, and I know this is a horrible thing to say, but I do not believe that the president [Barack Obama] loves America […] He doesn’t love you. And he doesn’t love me. He wasn’t brought up the way you were brought up and I was brought up, through love of this country.” [51]

In response to criticism for the above statement, Giuliani said “Some people thought it was racist—I thought that was a joke, since he was brought up by a white mother… This isn’t racism. This is socialism or possibly anti-colonialism.” [52]

September 2014

In 2014, he called on President Obama to fast-track applications to export natural gas as part of a foreign policy strategy: [53]

You know how President Obama is looking at non-military options to solve things such as the invasion of the Ukraine by Russia? It would have been within our abilities to export a massive amount of natural gas […] which would then have an impact on the world price of natural gas and would deprive Putin of the only strength he has left in his economy.”

August 2007

I was once in the coal business for a short period of time. I ran a company that had coal mines in Hazard, Ky., so we were able to share stories about the coal industry and some of the struggles it faces and the need for clean coal and carbon sequestration […]”

“[The U.S. would be] “better off if we could rely somewhat more on our coal reserves which are greater (in number) than the oil reserves in Saudi Arabia. “There’s a real opportunity here to expand our economy and take advantage of the global economy by selling energy independence to others. And as a matter of national security to put ourselves in a position where we don’t have to rely so much on oil from other parts of the world.”

One of my 12 commitments to the American people is to make our country energy independent and coal plays a big role in that.” [9]

June 2007

“Energy independence: if we can make that a major focus of American policy for the next 5-10 years, is a great industry for us to sell to China and India. They need energy independence. We should be able to figure out how to produce it and then we can sell it to them.” [55]

Key Deeds

June 24, 2019

Nearly 100 internal documents were leaked to Axios in 2019. As Axios reported, the documents identified a host of “red flags” about many individuals who would go on to work in the Trump administration, as well as others who were considered but failed to secure a position. [63]

Giuliani was listed among the documents. Some notable samples from the internal documents below:

The Houston-based law firm Giuliani joined as a named partner in 2005 lobbied in Texas for Citgo, the U.S. subsidiary of the Venezuelan state oil company then controlled by President Hugo Chavez, The New York Times reported in 2007.”

Giuliani Promotes The Fact He Has Foreign Consulting Contracts, Including Ones With The Government Of Mexico And TransCanada, Of Keystone XL Fame.”

In A Speech To Oklahoma State University In 2006, Giuliani Requested Travel On A ‘Private Gulfstream Jet That Cost The School $47,000 To Operate.’”

Giuliani Was Hired By Purdue Pharma To Consult On OxyContin Security While He Was Under Contract With The DEA To Combat It.”

Giuliani Partners Formed Strategic Alliance With Nextel While Consulting FCC On Crisis Communications.” [63]

October 2, 2016

Rudy Giuliani went on ABC News with George Stephanopoulos, discussing Trump’s taxes.  [56]

“My response is he’s a genius,” Giuliani began. “Absolute genius. I mean, the man in “The Art of the Deal” this is described. First of all, we’re talking about 26 years ago, perfectly legal. We should get that straight immediately. This is a perfectly legal application of the tax code. And he would’ve been fool not to take advantage of it. Not only that, he would’ve probably breached his fiduciary duty to his investors, to his business. You have an obligation when you run a business to maximize the profits. And if there is a tax law that says I can deduct this, you deduct it. If you fail to deduct it, people can sue you. Your investors can sue you.”

November 4, 2016

According to the Huffington Post, Rudy Giulani knew that the FBI planned to review emails tied to Hillary Clinton before the public announcement was released about the investigation, confirming that the agency had leaked information to Donald Trump’s presidential campaign. [57]

Giulani had already dropped several hints that he knew in advance that the FBI planned to look at the emails and had touted his connection to the FBI, mentioning that “outraged FBI agents” have told him they’re frustrated by how the Clinton investigation was handled. [58]

Two days before FBI Director James Comey announced that the agency was reviewing the emails, Giuliani said that Trump’s campaign had “a couple of surprises left.”  He said on Fox News (October 22):

“I think he’s got a surprise or two that you’re going to hear about in the next few days. I mean, I’m talking about some pretty big surprise […] you’ll see. […] We’ve got a couple things up our sleeve that should turn this around.” [57]

Later, after the FBI re-launched their investigation of the emails, Giulani confirmed on “Fox & Friends” that he had heard about it from former FBI agents: [57]

I did nothing to get it out, I had no role in it,” he said. “Did I hear about it? You’re darn right I heard about it, and I can’t even repeat the language that I heard from the former FBI agents.” 

I had expected this for the last, honestly, to tell you the truth, I thought it was going to be about three or four weeks ago, because way back in July this started, they kept getting stymied looking for subpoenas, looking for records,” he said.  [57]

The Daily Beast‘s Wayne Barrett also explored Giulani’s FBI connections, reporting that Giulani’s ties to the agency dated back to his days as a U.S. attorney in the 1980s. [59]

December 2, 2015

Rudy Giuliani appeared on “Your World With Neil Cavuto” to dispute President Obama’s statements linking climate change to terrorism (video below): [60]


“The president’s wrong in linking somehow by fixing climate change if he’s gonna fix it, he’s gonna fix terrorism. That’s absurd. There’s no connection between the two things. Where it’s like two different things. It’s like saying I’m gonna fix terrorism by curing cancer,” Giuliani told Cavuto. ““The terrorism that we’re dealing with is not emerging from desperation. Many of these people are middle class or rich people who are involved in the terrorism. This is an ideologically or religiously based – and I would say certainly a misinterpretation of the religion and a, or if you want to call it a hijacking of the religion – but the religion has been turned into an ideology,” Giuliani said. “It’s like saying communism was caused by climate change.” [60]

September, 2014

Rudy Giuliani spoke at the 5th Law of Shale Plays Conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The conference was presented by the Institute for Energy Law and the Energy and Mineral Law Foundation (EMLF).

Giuliani suggested Obama to fast-track applications to export natural gas as part of a foreign policy strategy: [53]

You know how President Obama is looking at non-military options to solve things such as the invasion of the Ukraine by Russia? It would have been within our abilities to export a massive amount of natural gas […] which would then have an impact on the world price of natural gas and would deprive Putin of the only strength he has left in his economy.”

Giuliani also said that the energy industry should “massive campaign to educate the American people.” He added that “I would conduct this in the year 2015 — which is the lead-up to the 2016 presidential campaign — a very well thought-out, a very well-planned campaign throughout the United States. Maybe focus more in the key states where the presidential election will be battled out among the Democrats and Republicans to explain what this can do for us, what it can do for our economy.” [53]



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Image by Gage Skidmore [CC BYSA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons.

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