Yesterday, radio talker Michael Medved http://michaelmedved.com all but came out endorsing former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee for the GOP presidential nomination. I like Mike, but Mitt's my guy and for the same reasons that Mr. Medved tacitly endorses Mr. Huckabee.
The most likable aspect about Mr. Huckabee is that he is a regular guy. He is the first in his family to not only graduate from high school but from college as well. Like another regular guy, former president Ronald Reagan, he graduated from a little-known college. Mr. Huckabee's college was Ouachita Baptist University while Mr. Reagan's was Eureka College and a part of the Disciples of Christ denomination which Mr. Reagan was raised.
Another good thing about Mr. Huckabee, and I think a real important aspect of what all on the Republican side need to listen to. Mr. Huckabee says about himself "I am a conservative but I am not mad at anyone." Many conservatives seem to forget that Mr. Reagan also was a conservative and not angry. Angry conservative Republicans will not get beyond dog-catcher as angry Democrats. If that was the case, we would be talking about President Howard Dean.
But, there are quite a few downsides that I see as stunting the case for Mike Huckabee.
Mr. Huckabee is an ordained Southern Baptist minister. I have no problem and former president Bill Clinton was a Southern Baptist. But an actual minister will only exacerbate the bloody culture wars and turn off more voters than turn on. In the case of Mitt Romney, he too is a minister but not in the same sense as Mr. Huckabee. Mormon men in good standing are ministers, not paid, and as in the case of Mr. Romney he rose to the rank of bishop which is the equivalent to a diocese in the Roman Catholic and Episcopal churches. So, both men are men of faith and controversial ones at that. But, one is ordained and one is not and not as obvious and while that may sound bad, it is true.
Another aspect of Mr. Huckabee is that he is proud of his record as a politician. And, regrettably that is part of the problem. We need a non-politician type at this point. All of the Democrat candidates for president are government and big to bigger government type. The advantage of Mr. Romney is that he has been in the private sector and thus has had to meet a payroll. He knows the bad effects of big government.
Most importantly, Mr. Huckabee can not run from the fact he has raised taxes as governor of Arkansas. Mr. Romney not only did not raise taxes as governor of Massachusetts, but cut the size of the state government in one term.
Taxes are as important as social policy. Mr. Romney has been consistent on both and I for one accept the fact he has come around on the issue of life.
MIke Huckabee is a good guy, but I think that the Republicans and the nation needs someone like a Mitt Romney in this crucial juncture in American history. I hope that Mr. Romney has a place for Mr. Huckabee in his administration.