"I voted already," Jane Weintraub, a transplanted New Yorker, tells Giuliani. More than 440,000 Florida Republicans have already voted through early voting and absentee ballots. Giuliani's campaign has banked on those early votes, which started a few weeks ago, before his plummet in Florida polls was apparent.
"Already?" Giuliani says.
"I voted for Rudy Giuliani for president, are you crazy?" Weintraub asks.
A local criminal defense attorney, she says she switched parties to vote for Giuliani.
"I think he's gonna do a lot better than polls say," she says. Members of the New York diaspora and Miamians who have visited Manhattan and seen how Giuliani cleaned it up will turn out for him, she says. "Times Square is packed and clean! It's Disney on Broadway!"
"We're gonna win today," Giuliani says at the diner. And then he will share in the "momentum in the national polls" that other candidates have enjoyed. "I believe we're gonna win that and that's gonna change that," he says.
His focus is on today, he says, refraining from discussions of his future plans should he not win tonight. "Hypotheticals about the future are counterproductive."
He asks for the check. "Don't let it be said that we don't pay our bill!" he jokes, an apparent reference to Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., who was criticized for not tipping an Iowa waitress.
Just yards from the Atlantic Ocean, Giuliani walks out into the daylight. "I feel terrific," he says. "It's a beautiful morning. We've got great support."