Fox host butts heads with Giuliani over emergency command center location
On this morning's edition of Fox News Sunday, host Chris Wallace grilled presidential candidate and former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani on his decision to put the emergency response command center in the World Trade Center in 1997, despite suggestions from advisers that it should be located elsewhere.
"Your director of emergency management suggested, recommended, that you not put it [in the World Trade Center] because it had been a target in 1993. Why did you do that?" asked Wallace.
"My director of emergency management recommended 7 World Trade Center," replied Giuliani.
"I've got a copy right here of Jerry Hauer's directive to you," Wallace came back, "and I -- there were meetings in which Jerry Hauer said that it's a bad idea and the police chief, Howard Safir said it was a bad idea."
Giuliani insisted that Hauer recommended the World Trade Center as a "prime site" for the emergency response command center for the city.
"Then why did he say the building, it's not -- a place in Brooklyn is not as visible a target as buildings in Lower Manhattan," Wallace broke in.
Giuliani said that the World Trade Center made the most sense to house an emergency response center because it also contained the offices of the Customs Service, the Secret Service, and a number of other federal agencies which he did not think he could name on the air.
Giuliani also emphasized that the city had a back up center in a Brooklyn police station that could be set up quickly.
"And we had a virtual command center," he said. "So when that command center was inoperable, within a half hour of September 11, we were able to move -- or within a half hour on September 11, we were able to move immediately to another command center."