ANAHEIM, CA — Curt Pringle, the conservative mayor of Anaheim and former speaker of the California State Assembly, has angered many Arab-Americans when he decided to endorse Republican presidential hopeful Rudy Giuliani. Since then he has been actively engaged in Giuliani’s campaign.
Anaheim is home for thousands of Arab-Americans who reside and work in a city that has one of the largest concentrations of Arab-Americans in the state of California.
Pringle’s choice is not a friend of Arab-Americans. In 1995, Giuliani said Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat was a terrorist and had him ejected from the Lincoln Center. After 9/11 he returned a $10 million relief effort donation from Saudi Prince Alwaleed bin Talal after he criticized US policies in the Middle East. More recently, the former mayor of New York hired neo-conservative hawks and staunch supporters of Israel such as Daniel Pipes and Norman Podhoretz as his advisors.
However, Giuliani had a perfect opportunity to reconcile with the Arab-American community when he was invited to address the Arab American Institute’s National Leadership Conference in Dearborn, Michigan in late October. He simply ignored the invitation.