Paste’s own Jacob Weindling dubbed Rudy Giuliani “the human embodiment of incompetence” just five days ago, and with good reason—he basically blew up the president’s spot on Fox News by telling the world that Trump reimbursed his attorney Michael Cohen for the $130,000 in hush money he gave Stormy Daniels. That kind of laundering for political purposes is a violation of campaign law, and now, per The Daily Beast, Trump might bar him from future TV appearances, and is at least very publicly upset. There are also rumors, propagated by MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough, that Giuliani was off Trump’s team up to this point because he was drinking too much and falling asleep during meetings.
This is all terrifying and hilarious, as usual, but I’d like to use it as an opportunity to revisit one of the weirdest videos on the world wide web. It involves Rudy Giuliani dressed in drag, and Donald Trump sexually assaulting him, and I want you to watch it before we get into any explanation:
This is not a new video, obviously—it has more than two million hits on YouTube, and it apparently comes from a documentary called GIULIANI TIME by Kevin Keating, with the footage originally recorded in 2000 for a roast of the then New York City mayor. Business Insider has the plot recap:
The set-up features Giuliani’s alter-ego splashing perfume on “her” neck and then bosom in an attempt to charm Trump, who then goes further than expected and sticks his face into Giuliani’s chest.
Giuliani reacts by calling Trump a “dirty boy” and slapping him. As Giuliani walks away, Trump looks at the camera and says “Well, you can’t say I didn’t try.”
There are a few amazing things about this. First, that Giuliani dressed in drag at all, which was apparently not a rare event—his character was called “Rudia,” and surfaced a number of times over his career as mayor starting in 1997. Second, it’s not that funny—it’s weirdly devoid of context, and just seems like an excuse to get Giuliani in women’s clothes and have Trump stick his face in his chest. Less hilariously, there are the echoes of the “pussy grab” tape (and various other accusations) that would surface against Trump years later, all of which make the scene incredibly uncomfortable today. And finally, just to repeat my main thought…what the hell is happening?
I hope that after we nuke each other to ashes, this video is the last surviving evidence of our planet. And that when aliens come down, they find it and go, “what a bizarre place.” They will not be wrong.