The leading Republican for next year’s presidential contest, Rudy Giuliani, is having to contend with the embarrassment of discovering his teenage daughter signed up as a supporter of Barack Obama, one of the Democratic frontrunners.
Mr Giuliani, whose family relationships are fraught after a messy divorce, is well ahead of his Republican rivals in spite of reports about his personal life.
His children have already signalled they do not intend to campaign for him. But the Slate political website discovered that his daughter, Caroline, 17, had gone further and signed up to social networking group Facebook’s “Barack Obama (1 Million Strong for Barack)” site.
She also described herself as a liberal on the Facebook page.
A spokeswoman for her said her Facebook listing was an expression of interest in “certain principles” rather than for an individual in the campaign, and the comments have been removed from the site.
It comes only days after Mr Giuliani’s wife, Judith, faced criticism in Vanity Fair which portrayed her as interfering in the campaign and drawing up a list of aides she wanted fired. It was also claimed she demanded a separate seat on the campaign plane for her Louis Vuitton handbag.
An interview she gave to the New York Times at the weekend did little to help, drawing attention to her part in the break-up of Mr Giuliani’s previous marriage.
Mr Obama, asked about Caroline Giuliani’s support, said: “That’s very nice. We think it’s wonderful that we are attracting support from young people all across the country. I can’t wait to meet her.”
A poll published yesterday put Mr Giuliani well ahead of the Republican field on 33%, with Fred Thompson at 21%, John McCain on 16% and Mitt Romney on 8%. The USA Today/Gallup poll, which interviewed 1,012 adults across the US, also gave Hillary Clinton a clear lead over her Democratic rivals with 48%. Mr Obama was on 26% and John Edwards on 12%.
The poll figures suggest Mr Giuliani’s pro-abortion stance is not hurting him as much as expected.