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Friday, January 21, 2011

So Tell Me About Mike Huckabee

This is part of a continuing series in which I ask my readers to inform me as to possible Republican presidential candidates with whom I am not that familiar, or at least not familiar enough to make a judgment. 

There is, of course, one potential candidate who needs no such introduction, but I am an open-minded person, so please inform me as you did with Tim Pawlenty and Mitch Daniels

I'm more familiar with Huckabee than I was with Pawlenty and Daniels, because Huckabee is more of a national personality, but I really don't know that much about him.

So tell me about Mike Huckabee.

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  1. I'll admit that I don't know much at all about Huckabee, other than he replaced Clinton's best bud Jim Guy Tucker as gov of Arkansas back in the 90s.

    However, he comes across (to me) as a political opportunist, which is why I figured he's called the Huckster.

  2. I'm not a fan of Mike Huckabee. He's a fence sitter who will say what he thinks people want to hear, and although he touts his conservative creds, he is really not that conservative on many things.

    Take illegal immigration. Under Mike Huckabee, Northwest Arkansas turned into Little Mexico. The area is filled with poultry processing plants, like Tyson Foods, and since there was little other industry there, the people of Arkansas came to depend on those jobs. Tyson Foods, et al, laid off Arkansaians (sp?) and even went so far as to "import" workers from Mexico that wound them up in a federal court. Tyson's Foods problems over illegal immigration is all public record. Go into any Wal-Mart store in Northwest Arkansas and it is filled with Spanish speaking only customers. One store even had all the signage in Spanish and our cashier did not speak English.

    Huckabee also has some problems when it comes to his prison system.

  3. Huckabee is a nice guy who wants to be President because he sees himself as the nice guy. Truth is, he is a far more liberal "conservative" than can be allowed by the physical laws of nature- which makes him a fraud. He is Romney with a lot less hair gel and lacking a background in business.

    Mitch Daniels, Mike Pence, even Rick Perry are far more attractive. Is Huckabee a good guy? Sure, but look at his record in Arkansas. He wasn't all that great.

  4. He is an outstanding pro-life democrat who for some reason is running as a Republican. Has issues with things like not trying to "solve the problem" of childhood obesity by applying the BMI to children.

    Basically, a little too prone to being willing to use the government to do the good Christian thing. (Which, depending on your theology and politics, is either a sympathetic flaw that misses the whole point of doing the good Christian thing, or is a wonderful thing that the Republicans should have been doing forever....)

  5. Huckabee is a southern baptist minister. He showed disturbing tendencies to use the power of the state to invade people's a in his campaign diet. I don't think he has good conservative grounding, and he has a disturbing tendency to project a holier than thou message.

    I must admit my thinking about Huckabee is colored by my previous experience with baptist ministers. I would never vote for Huckabee. If the choice were Obama or Huckabee I would probably cast a protest vote for the libertarian candidate.

  6. Last time around he proved himself to be a populist economic fool.

  7. Personally, I don't buy his routine. Never have.

    If nothing else, the man gave out an incredible number of pardons/commutations while he was in office, their finding Jesus being one of the primary criteria for eligibility. One of the bad boys killed someone a while back. That's the instance we know about. Criminals being criminals (incredible liars and frauds), I suspect a good number of these men had further brushes with the law. So if he's the nominee, we can expect to see a full year of increasingly horrific stories of repeat offenders enabled by Gov. Huckabee.

    It will accomplish one thing, however. The MSM will all of a sudden find the Willie Horton story/commercial legitimate and compelling. Which is something I guess.

    Draft Teh Fred!

  8. As governor, Huckabee set a violent criminal free who later went to Washington state and killed a bunch of cops.
    None of the politicians named in your post interest me, mostly because they are not ALLEN WEST.

  9. He's bad on property rights, individual autonomy and taxes.

    The thing I most remember about him are from the Iowa primaries from the last Presidential run-up. When he consistently ran to the Left of the Democratic candidates in their primary.

  10. He's good on guns and babies and absolutely nothing else. I like guns and babies, but they don't trump everything else for me.

  11. My sense of Huckabee is that he lacks the internal antipathy to big government solutions that will be necessary in a president if we are to extract ourselves from the spending/regulation/bureaucratic syndrome that is strangling our country.

  12. As my governor he was fair, but did have a problem in listening to others, he was for telling people what to eat before Michelle Obama came along. He was known for not making real decisions often and then, like the prisoner who wound up killing someone in WA., the decisions were wrong. Women state representatives felt that he was patronizing and did not listen to them. He would not be my choice.

  13. He's a second tier candiate, one who was a spoiler last time to kamikaze Romney(not really a fan of him either but he'll be better than Huckabee) and make way for McCain. I have read many comments on HotAir.com that voters would have a hard time getting up the passion to vote for him and I my feelings aren't all that different.

    P.S.- Aesthetically, there is no worse sounding name than President Huckabee.

  14. Do we really need another Southern Billy Sunday? I agree with everyone above and would add that his followers ran a very anti-Catholic, anti-Mormon and anti-Semitic campaign in 2008.

    And why do former Arkansas governors always fancy themselves to be serious musicians? Clinton retired his sax early but Huckleberry seems to believe that he is a serious musician. Puhlease. The guy is a charlatan.

  15. Don't really care for his brand of politics. I think he stayed in the 08 Presidential primary long enough to take votes away from Romney, and McCain was the nominee.

  16. I find his "Fair Tax" idea quite appealing. As I undersand his proposal, he wants to abolish the current tax regime of taxing income and investment and replace it with a system that taxes consumption -- similar to a Value Added Tax or a national sales tax.

    If you believe in the notion that "when you tax something, you get less of it", then our current system of taxing income and investment creates perverse disincentives to work and invest.

    I like the idea of eliminating all taxes on income and investment. Let people keep every penny of income they earn, and then only tax them when they decide to spend it. That's the basic idea behind the Fair Tax.

    Of course, the politicians would probably screw the whole thing up by not abolishing the current tax regime and instead they'd just make the Fair Tax a brand new tax on top of the income tax and capital gains tax. And that would be an unmitigated disaster.

  17. Anti-Catholic and -Semitic?

    Did I miss a commercial about the Pope, John McCainberg or Fred Thompsonstein?

  18. "Arkansaians (sp?) "

    People from Arkansas are called Arkansaveyans, as in - cue hoarse whisper, empathetic grimace, soulful gaze, plus roseate hue from chronic refusal to inhale – "Ah feel yore pain. Vote fur me. Ah can save ya."

  19. Former Southern Baptist preacher who is painted by the left as a scary fundamentalist nutcase who wants to impose a scary fundamentalist theocracy right here in the good old U. S. of A.

    Nice guy, far too nice to get in the trenches with BO or to fend off BO's evil troop of flying monkeys. Despite many good ideas/positions (tax reform--likes the Fair Tax, while I prefer the Flat Tax, but either would be an improvement; strong military; strong supporter of Israel, among the strongest on that front, actually), he's also supported cap and tax and now denies that, even though he's on vid saying so (big mistake, of course).

    He's a non-starter in 2012 for the same reasons he was in 2008.

  20. The Huck is an open borders man, so that problem would only get worse with him. He does not know how to make a really hard decision, so he will always waffle in one form or another, leading to a bad result. At the same time, he has times when he is sure he is right, and has no qualms about using the coercive power of the state to enforce his "right ideas." He is definitely a big government man.

  21. Huckabee is a McRino/Romney in Baptist's clothing. A nanny-stater-lite politician. Or as one commenter has already said: A pro-life Democrat who for some reason is running as a Republican.

    Want more proof of the veracity of my opinion? The media is starting to "fall in love" with the guy. Translation: He's the setup man to take the next fall to Obama.

  22. 1. During the 2008 campaign Huckabee said, "I believe it's a lot easier to change the Constitution than it would be to change the word of the living God. And that's what we need to do—to amend the Constitution so it's in God's standards rather than try to change God's standards so it lines up with some contemporary view of how we treat each other and how we treat the family."

    Lisa Schiffren at The Corner responded, "...Mike Huckabee is going to force those of us who have wanted more religion in the town square to reexamine the merits of strict separation of church and state. He is the best advertisement ever for the ACLU..." Her whole comment is worth reading.

    2. Bill, your 'Tell me about...' tactic is rather clever (in a constructive, win-win way).

  23. This hilarious quote circa January 2008, which drips with class envy, tells us a lot about Huck: "For those of us for whom summer is not a verb, for those of us who didn't go to fancy boarding schools on the east coast, for those of us who didn't grow up with a silver spoon, who were lucky to have a spoon -- ask those folks and they'll tell you the economy is not doing well for them."

  24. Definitely not my choice. Way too left leaning. We need a fighter with strong convictions and the internal fire needed to run the race in 2012. Huckabee has a "strange" and "preachy" vibe to me. Keep up this series of "Tell me about..." because I'm learning a lot. Can you give Paul Ryan a look-see?

  25. "One of the bad boys killed someone a while back." - Cowboy Curtis

    It was much, much worse than that.

    His name was Maurice Clemmons, and he ambushed, gunned down and murdered four Lakewood, WA police officers as they were sipping coffee at a coffee shop on a Sunday morning before they started their shifts.

    There's a lot of blame to go around on that horrible slaying - starting with Clemmons, himself - but Huckabee was the one who let the bastard out in the first place.

    Clemmons should still be in an Arkansas jail, and four police officers and their families should still be in place.

  26. It's very possible that the Lakewood body count would have been higher if the (former cop) owner of that coffee place hadn't drilled all of his counter girls in what to do if someone came in with a gun-- that is, run out the back, shutting doors behind them, and call the cops from a safe place. In early interviews with the girls on local radio, I remember they mentioned that the other customers got out of sight and followed their lead. Don't know how much national coverage it got.

    Greg Richards, father of three, managed to chase his murderer out of the shop and got off a shot before his head wound overcame him.

  27. Makes Elmer Gantry look like Mother Teresa. This guy is so phony he makes Uriah Heep look like Francis of Assisi

  28. Might want to make a category-- "So tell me about".

    Make it easier for folks to suggest it to others.

  29. He's also soft on illegal immigration:


    Quote from the post:
    "Note that he a) supports tuition subsidies for illegal immigrants and b) opposes proof of citizenship requirements for voting."

  30. It looks like everyone else has just about summed it up. If you want confirmation on his views you can read his book "Do the Right Thing." I wish I hadn't wasted my time.

  31. That song? The Backstabbers? It was written for him; it's his theme song. Shakespeare's line in Hamlet: oh that one could smile and smile and be a villain? Shakespeare had Huckabee in mind.

    Smilingly petty, vicious, and vindictive, Huckabee thinks his dimples are the sinkhole hiding his nastiness. He's a RINO and no politician should turn their back on him. Big spender. He uses his time in the ministry to cover him with a false piety.

    So far, I've been really nice about Huckabee. What I've said are the good things cuz I can't think of anything bad to say about him.

  32. So far I've hear everything about the man I have always heard.

    WTFF is this man always listed in the top of the GOP presidential polls?

    If the polls were all left leaning I could understand it, but Rasmussen too? WTFF?

    I really hope a viable challenger floats to the top of the turd pile for 2012 because McCain/Romney/Huckabee will make me find something else to do on election day.

  33. I couldn't stand the Huckster then, nor now. The media has pretty much given him a pass but they were all teed up to do him in--and he was too stupid to realize it. Here's my post on a NY Times interview from back in 2007. The Abysmal Huckabee: http://backyardconservative.blogspot.com/2007/12/abysmal-huckabee.html

  34. Huckabee always does well in the polls, because the polls are asked of people who aren't necessarily closely following politics.

    Who would you rather have for president,
    Millionaire with quaffed hair CEO type guy former governor you've never heard of,
    or Former baptist minister former governor you've never heard of? Which (in theory) sounds more honest and reliable?

    It's no surprise to me the choices people make with limited information, especially in primary states with heavy concentrations of values voters. I guarantee you'd Huck would get a big fat 0% if primaries started in CA and NY.

  35. He's a populist when it suits him; a celebrity who seeks to be a celebrity. He's also dishonest. He tag-teamed with John McCain against Mitt Romney during the '08 primaries, which is the only reason Romney lost.

    An old-fashioned preacher man, he claimed to not want to make an issue of Romney's religion; but then, in the same interview with the NYT, he asked the "off the record" question "don't Mormons believe Jesus and Satan are brothers?" Not only is that a distortion of what Mormons believe, but as an ordained minister with his much-touted degree in theology, he should have already known the answer to the question. He made it in the last weeks before the Iowa Caucuses, specifically to stir up animus among evangelicals like himself; just like he'd been doing for years at religious conferences around the country.

    Any man who uses such underhand and dishonest tactics is not a man whom I want to see in leadership anywhere.

  36. By the way, the posts comparing him to Romney are inaccurate. Unlike Huckabee, who tries to hide the fact that he was bad on taxes as governor by adopting the FairTax line, Romney can actually handle a complex budget and turn deficits into surpluses. Huckabee opposes many of the conservative policies that Romney espouses, including immigration and national security policies. He thinks having a degree in theology makes him an expert on the Middle East, while Romney actually takes the time to visit the region and talk with the commanders and diplomats who work and live there. Trust me, there's far more difference between them than hair.

  37. Wow. None who commented were:
    A. From Arkansas.
    B. Informed about Mike (the Huckster) Huckabee.

    I live in Arkansas, and have for almost 20 years. I had a personal run-in with Lt. Governor Huckabee in June of 1996 over the then settled issue of the Arkansas Constitution of 1874 and any proposed rewrite.

    Mike Huckabee sided with Governor Jim Guy Tucker in attempting to illegally rewrite the 1874 Constitution in 1995. Their proposed Constitutional Convention was soundly defeated at the polls in Nov. of 1995.

    BTW, Huckabee illegally destroyed the hard drives of 30 STATE OWNED PCs when he left the office of Governor. All the PCs were used by the Governor's office and associated staff.

    Huckabee supported the Ozark Biosphere Project which would have depopulated much of North Arkansas - and then denied he ever had anything to with the UN-based project.

    There is more...

  38. Huckabee failed my own personal litmus test for intelligence by believing in the global warming hoax and supporting can-n-trade. No, your not allowed to flip on this one. Just think of the stupidity, the total lack of principle that would lead one to believe that higher taxes could somehow lower the temperature of the planet. That goes double for creepy Newt, too.

  39. I can't stand him. Of all the possible GOP nominees, Huck's the one I'd have the absolute hardest time voting for in the general election, even against Obama. I mean, I'd do it. I think. I hope. But I really, really don't like him.

    I don't like that he's a nanny stater. I don't like that he's creepy. I don't like that he's a Southern Baptist preacher (there are lots and lots of lovely SBs out there, but I'd never belong to an SB church based on their positions regarding women). I don't like the implication (and I'm not sure exactly where I'm getting this vibe from) that as a Evangelical, Huckabee should be my guy.

    I agree with every thing above in terms of substantial reasons I don't like him, but just on a personal, intuitive level, he creeps me out, and I don't like him.

  40. Ditto most of the previous comments. Creepy, smiling backstabber. As a Christian myself, this quote about the Confederate flag issue doesn't seem particularly preacherly. "You don't like people from outside the state coming in and telling you what to do with your flag," Huckabee said at a Myrtle Beach campaign event. "In fact, if somebody came to Arkansas and told us what to do with our flag, we'd tell them what to do with the pole, that's what we'd do."

  41. I made my decision about Huck when watching the debates in '08.

    In one debate, Mitt Romney began to talk about the danger of the global caliphate which Islamic radicals are trying to create, and Huck clearly knew nothing about the topic. The only problem I had with Romney's information was that he spoke as if he was reading Goodnight Moon to a grandchild when he brought up the topic. It's deadly serious, and his delivery should have matched that seriousness.

    The next debate, suddenly Huck started talking about the caliphate, in words nearly identical to what Romney had said in the previous debate. Romney looked at him like he wished he could strangle him at that moment.

    I believed then and now that Huck could not have handled a follow-up on that, because he'd just emptied his entire bin of knowledge about the global caliphate. It's like he cribbed answers for a test by looking on someone else's paper.

    I was impressed that Romney had studied Islam deeply enough to see the threat. I believe that Huck just stole it from him, to look smart. I don't need someone who reads the dust jacket of books and pretends to have studied the topic as my next president. I already have one of those.

    Hope, Arkansas, must have a slime content in the water that those raised there cannot wash off.

    My 2 cents.

  42. He's a phony trying to fool everyone with his self-deprecating, aw-shucks humor. The ONLY good thing about him is his support of the FairTax.