President Donald Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani looks at his cellphone outside the White House on the South Lawn (NICHOLAS KAMM/AFP via Getty Images)

Rudy Giuliani accidentally tweets Google search on "dementia," presumably targeting Biden

After apparent tweet gaffe related to "major exposé" of Biden, Giuliani and his aide declined to answer questions



Roger Sollenberger
August 19, 2020 9:00AM (UTC)

Former LifeLock spokesperson Rudy Giuliani appears to have extended his streak of high-profile technological gaffes by accidentally typing an intended Google search into a tweet and then posting it.

The subject of the former New York City mayor's search/tweet appears to have been related to a forthcoming "major exposé" Giuliani claims he will unveil about Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden's cognitive ability. Giuliani teased the revelation in another tweet later that same day.

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"Does dsm have 5 definitions of dementia and" tweeted Giuliani, President Donald Trump's former informal cybersecurity adviser, who once butt-dialed an NBC News reporter in the middle of a sensitive conversation and left a three-minute-long self-incriminating voicemail message.

It didn't take long for America's Mayor to delete the apparent error, but resourceful Twitter users snapped screenshots before it was lost to the sands of time:

Hours later, Giuliani tweeted a photograph of himself seated by a microphone and wearing the earphones he uses to record his podcast, reading a copy of the fifth edition of the "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders" (DSM-V) — the chief authority for psychiatric diagnoses. Giuliani seems to have inserted a few sheets of printer paper into the section he's reading.

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The photo is captioned: "Currently doing research on a major exposé. This will completely shake the 2020 Presidential election. Stay tuned."

It appears from a short text conversation with Salon that Giuliani thought he'd deleted his tweet before anyone noticed. When asked whether he'd seen people mocking him for the apparent mistake, Giuliani replied:

What do you mean

When Salon showed him one of the tweets, Giuliani stopped replying, though his read receipts indicated he had seen the message.

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In a follow-up conversation, Giuliani's communications director, Christianné Allen, told Salon in a text message, "At this moment I cannot elaborate further than what was shared this afternoon."

But a combination of the two tweets suggests that Giuliani had been conducting online research into the contents of the DSM-V — on the same day he posted a photo of himself reading a physical copy of the book — in preparation for delivering a supposedly devastating analysis of Biden's cognitive ability for a "major exposé" on his podcast, "Common Sense."

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No such episode has yet aired.

Although Giuliani nominally runs a global cybersecurity firm, his awkward relationship to technology has become legendary. In November 2019, amid House impeachment hearings on the Ukraine scandal, in which Giuliani played a central role, Salon reported that the former U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York had accidentally texted what appeared to be a password to a Salon correspondent.

Giuliani, who has since confirmed to Salon that the aforementioned text was indeed a password, has routinely attempted to skewer Biden's intellect, but has himself become infamous for rambling media appearances. In response to Giuliani's attacks on Biden's intelligence in July, "Morning Joe" rolled a supercut of some of Giuliani's lowlights as a Trump surrogate.

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"I don't understand it!" said host Joe Scarborough. "I just don't understand why Donald Trump and Rudy Giuliani and all these people who have a greatest hits package of being cognitively impaired would point to anybody else and suggest they're cognitively impaired. We've been saying this for a long time. Donald Trump can't attack Joe Biden on this issue, because for every clip they find, we can find 10 clips that make them look even more concerning."

Giuliani's last attempt at a "major exposé" of Biden led directly to the impeachment of his client, the president of the United States.


Roger Sollenberger

Roger Sollenberger is a staff writer at Salon.

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Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Christianné Allen Dementia Donald Trump Elections Joe Biden Reporting Rudy Giuliani

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