This civil rape case against Rudy Giuliani is beyond explosive in more ways than one

“You should consider going into acting, mayor.” That’s the last thing Rudy Giuliani tweeted before the news broke on Monday that his former employee Noelle Dunphy had filed a civil case against him alleging that he raped her, that he tried to sell pardons for cash, and he urged her not to cooperate with the FBI. The quote posted by Giuliani suggested that he still didn’t quite understand how much legal trouble he was already in. Perhaps now it’s finally sinking in for him.

As far as anyone knows, Giuliani is still under DOJ criminal investigation in relation to the 2020 election. As a general rule (and as we were just reminded of by the George Santos indictment), if major media outlets report that someone is under DOJ criminal investigation, never assume that investigation has been dropped or petered out just because there haven’t been any new headlines about it lately. The DOJ likes to operate in secret. And apart from that, Giuliani is pretty clearly a criminal target in the Fulton County criminal probe.

But in recent months Giuliani sure has been acting like someone who thinks he got away with it all. Then again, Giuliani has also been acting like an unhinged conspiracy theorist who’s incapable of understanding the reality around him one way or the other. Perhaps it’s not going to sink in for him no matter what transpires. That said, Rudy’s reaction to this civil case could be rather revealing.

For one thing, this isn’t some government probe being carried out in the shadows, with headlines few and far between, the kind that can lull a criminal target (again think George Santos) into thinking he’s off the hook until an indictment comes out of nowhere. This is a very public civil suit against Rudy Giuliani, complete with dozens of pages detailing the criminal acts that he allegedly carried out. The media is all over this case, the public is all over it, and the headlines aren’t going away any time soon. In fact this new Rudy scandal is almost made for the headlines.

This new case against Rudy Giuliani is the next big high profile civil rape suit against a powerful man in the wake of E. Jean Carroll’s victory over Donald Trump. This case also includes very public accusations of Giuliani trying to sell pardons for cash, at a time when the Trump team thought they’d moved on from that scandal. And this case also includes a direct accusation of obstruction of justice against Giuliani; you’re not allowed to instruct your employees (or anyone else) not to cooperate with a federal criminal investigation into you.

Given how aggressively thorough DOJ Special Counsel Jack Smith has been in obtaining things like the recordings made by the Fox News whistleblower, does anyone think Smith won’t want to talk to Giuliani’s accuser about the felony obstruction of justice she says he committed? One way or another, it feels like this civil case is going to end up becoming a criminal case, or a part of some other criminal case. This is just getting started.