ICYMI: Former NYC Mayor Rudy Giuliani told me last night that while some people might be bothered by Mitt Romney’s lack of pizazz, he’s more interested in the GOP presidential nominee’s ability to do the job.

Giuliani is now a full-throated Romney supporter – a turnaround from 2008 when he ran against the former Massachusetts governor for the GOP nod for the White House. (Both lost out to Sen. John McCain).

“I want a competent person as president,” Giuliani told me. “I don’t care how cool he is…I don’t know how cool he is.”

“Everybody thinks President Obama is cool and terrific and everybody loves him and they think he’s great. But fine. We have 8.3 percent unemployment. We’ve had it for forever. The president can’t pass a budget even when he has a Democratic Senate. We’ve had the highest level of permanent unemployment that we’ve had since the Great Depression.”

(The cool vs. competence line is apparently one Giuliani is employing frequently in his many media appearances here in Tampa).

I asked Giuliani what sold him on Romney. (He was a NJ Gov. Chris Christie supporter early on).

“I think I watched him progress during the primary,” the former mayor replied. “I thought he was the strongest candidate throughout the primaries.”

“I thought he kept to a very, very strict message of economic reform, reduce the size of government, reduce taxes. I’m very impressed with his knowledge of the economy, both national and international.”

“I’ve had time to talk to him now, not as an opponent, but as a friend and an ally. I became convinced that he’d be the right guy to handle the economy at a time when it’s at great peril.”