Secular Right | Reality & Reason

Oct/09

16

The Party of Huckabee?

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Via Rasmussen:

Twenty-nine percent (29%) of Republican voters nationwide say former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee is their pick to represent the GOP in the 2012 Presidential campaign.

Full details can be found here.

Palin’s pain has been Huckabee’s gain, it seems, as he appears to have picked up some of her support. Given the selection on offer, it’s probably not that surprising that Mitt Romney emerges as the preferred candidate of the wicked secular right (or at least among those Republicans “who attend church once a month or less”). Meanwhile, Pawlenty’s nod to the Intelligent Design crowd doesn’t (I’m delighted to say) seem to have done him much good so far. He’s the candidate that GOP voters would least like to see as the party’s pick, although I suspect that glorious distinction may in reality simply reflect the fact that Pawlenty is just not that well-known. Perhaps he should try coming out for UFOs next time.

We’re a long, long way from 2012, but there’s nothing in this poll that’s bad news for Obama. And that’s bad news.

36 comments

  • sg · October 16, 2009 at 2:46 pm

    Democracy is the worst sort of government except for all the others.

    Can I get a bumper sticker that says, “Least Bad 2012″

  • Burk de Brumbra · October 16, 2009 at 2:54 pm

    By Palin’s pain you must be referring to her multi million dollar advance and high rank on Amazon? I thought so.

    Huckabee colluded with McCain to trash Romney’s run. I doubt he is really anyone’s pick except those who watch his TV show. He’s a typical bible thumping hypocrite.

  • Kevin Kent · October 16, 2009 at 8:06 pm

    I’m a Christian but consider my politics very secular and very mainline conservative. About 18 to 24 months ago, I abhorred Mike Huckabee for maybe some of the reaosons this website hates him, but probably for other reasons as well. Howevever, over time, I’ve found that he is perhaps the most articulate, thoughtful voice of opposition in America today. Let’s face some basic facts here: Congress controls domestic programs–mostly domestic spending programs–and the president controls foreign policy. As the head of his party, the president’s job is to be an articulate voice for the party and a powerful world leader. President Huckabee wouldn’t even have the power to institute a radical abortion agenda or school prayer or anything along those lines. It’s frankly something that happens apart from the White House. Realizing that has allowed me to open my mind up to Huckabee more and I think I am coming around.

  • John · October 17, 2009 at 12:48 am

    Way to offend people of faith! Keep it up, and many like us will break to a third party, thus making the GOP irrelevant for a few generations.

  • Michael in PA · October 17, 2009 at 2:23 am

    While I know that it is unlikely he will run in 2012, has anyone polled for Gen. Petraeus?

    http://www.tnr.com/blog/the-plank/petraeus-republican

  • Another Michael in PA · October 17, 2009 at 4:01 am

    Remember, the last race was Clinton vs. Giuliani at this time.

    John Thune.

  • Blake’s Think Tank » Blog Archive » Huckabee Leads Republican Field in New Poll · October 17, 2009 at 6:09 am

    [...] According to Andrew Stuttaford of Secular Right, [...]

  • Joseph Marshall · October 17, 2009 at 6:27 am

    “it’s probably not that surprising that Mitt Romney emerges as the preferred candidate of the wicked secular right”

    I am a little bit surprised by this. Romney is a Mormon. That means that one of the things he [ostensibly] believes is that God wrote an extra book of the Bible on gold tablets and buried it in the area around Elmira, New York.

    I’m not kidding. Read up on the history of Mormonism sometime.

    And this is the candidate that is the choice of the Secular Right? Has any one among you ever asked whether he really thinks this is so? Intelligent Design has at least a superficial veneer of abstract possibility, even if it flies in the face of overwhelming consistent and coherent evidence. And Alien UFO’s are not likely, but not globally refutable by evidence to the contrary, since none of us are omnicient so no one can absolutely prove the non-existence of something.

    But the Prophet Joseph Smith?

    Now I know that Democrats have exactly the same intellectual dilemma with someone like Harry Reid, but we do not have a fringe element in the party centered around issues like Creationism, and loony objections to intelligent sex education in schools. So we can ignore the eccentric belief with more confidence and comfortably evaluate him based on results.

    Under the circumstances, can you afford to do this?

  • Polichinello · October 17, 2009 at 6:39 am

    We just discussed that very same topic, Joseph. :)

    At any rate, Romney hardly strikes anyone as a fundamentalist Mormon.

  • JohnR · October 17, 2009 at 6:46 am

    It’s too early to tell, but my guess is the Dem’s (and Obama’s) weekness in 2012 will still be the economy, taxes, and the national debt. The one candidate with solid economic creditentials is Romney. He’s also been vetted, has low negative ratings, and is loaded with cash. IMO he’s the no-brainer choice for the Reps in 2012. I also like him because he’s a fiscal conservative and social moderate (his tepid pro-life position excepted) which is, IMO, exactly what Independant voters are looking for. Huckabee is a great speaker but he’s simply too religious.

  • Joseph Marshall · October 17, 2009 at 6:47 am

    Oh, sorry, I must have missed it. I’ve been away for a while making trouble over on the blog of my good friend, The Anchoress.

  • PTAMominMaryland · October 17, 2009 at 7:21 am

    Mike Huckabee is the BEST!! He is good government, good government for Democrats, Republicans, and Independents. I’ve given more money to him than to any other candidate, ever, much to my husband’s chagrin. I got up at 5am to put out 70 signs in bad weather in February at polling places for the Maryland primaries. I drove around for hours in the pouring rain, picking the signs back up and then drove them an hour away to a pickup point in Virginia. A gentleman from Maryland was picking up the Huckabee signs from the Maryland / Virginia area and driving them to I think it was Ohio to be used in their primaries. As the primaries progressed, a grassroots movement sprung up between states, passing around signs and other literature.

    Mike Huckabee is just what America needs to solve our financial problems. He knows how to accomplish alot with just alittle and he
    does it in such a positive way.

    I LIKE MIKE!

    P.S. Don’t believe the opinion of Huckabee of any conservative radio talk show host or columnist who works for Clear Channel Communications or their wholly owned subsidiary Premiere Radio Networks. Romney’s Bain Capital began a LBO of Clear Channel back in Nov 2006. I was amazed and disconcerted when Romney was given a conservative label last election cycle by all of these conservative personalities. In Massachusetts only 12-13% of the registered voters are Republicans … conservative Republicans don’t get elected governor even in Maryland where 33% of the registered voters are Republicans. Romney was selected as one of the top 10 RINOs (Republicans in Name Only) in 2005 or thereabouts and somehow became conservative in time for the presidential election? No, he just bought a bunch of contracts of conservative talk shows and columnists. His father was part of a group that started a liberal wing of the Mormon church back in the 60’s. His mother ran for Senate in Michigan on a pro-choice platform in 1970, before Roe v. Wade.

  • Party Party Party &lt &gt Fantastic Nights With Dj Soundgood, Mobile Disco (London, Price: £50) | Embarrassing Conditions · October 17, 2009 at 8:01 am

    [...] Secular Right » The Party of Huckabee? [...]

  • Salt Lake City · October 17, 2009 at 8:31 am

    I agree it’s early to decide on a nominee. Normally, Huck would be my last choice of those who have been mentioned, but seeing the Mormon-haters already out in force, I’ll drop Romney to the bottom. Not interested in another 3 years of public religious bigotry. It’s bad enough hearing it in everyday life. Just one note, as you’re ridiculing Mormon beliefs think about how scientifically reasonable your beliefs about the holy trinity or trans-substantiation or any number of other faith-based beliefs might be. How do those beliefs affect one’s ability to serve as president?

  • Carolynn · October 17, 2009 at 8:59 am

    @Joseph Marshall

    That is the type of bigotry towards religion that will put Obama back in the White House.

    You name me one candidate who has the economic gravitas of Romney — none.

    Who do you think can get in a ring with Obama and surgically take him apart with his words better then Romeny?

    Everything we have been fighting for in this movement is going to go up in flames if we don’t pick the right candidate. And we can’t afford and should not tolerate bigots towards Mitt’s religion.

  • William Shipley · October 17, 2009 at 9:01 am

    Governor Palin is doing exactly what she needs to. She’s establishing herself on many of the issues facing America, she’s written her book, which will undoubtedly lay the groundwork for a presidential run. She’s got 928,000 facebook followers as opposed to huckabee’s 121,000 or Romney’s 81,000.

    It’s 2009, it’s too early to start a 2012 push and Palin has no need to spend years building name recognition. When Romney has a ‘town hall’ type talk, dozens come to hear. What do you suppose will happen when Governor Palin does the same?

    When the actual primary run starts, it’s going to be Snow White and the seven dwarves.

  • Andrew Stuttaford · October 17, 2009 at 9:06 am

    Joseph, remember that I prefaced that comment in my post with the words “Given the selection on offer…”

  • Secular Right » The Romney Paradox · October 17, 2009 at 11:13 am

    [...] American Conservative’s Daniel Larison responds to my earlier post on the ‘Party of Huckabee’ here. As always with Larison, the whole thing is well worth [...]

  • Joseph Marshall · October 17, 2009 at 11:37 am

    Well, Andrew, maybe you ought to do something about that. After the dismal election of 2002, some of us Democrats got together, came to the conclusion that politics was getting too important to be left to the professionals, and figured out that certain elements of the party–such as the Clintonistas on the DNC and the DLC were part of the problem–not part of the solution. From the Howard Dean campaign forward we’ve been making our views known. We are part of the reason Barack Obama is in the White House.

    Why are there no Secular Conservative PACs, like MoveOn.org or DFA, either whooping up the troops or teaching basic political organization skills? Why are there no Secular Conservatives who appear to want to learn them? There are still large numbers of Republican State Assemblymen around the country who are the talent pool for future national elections. Surely some of them are Secular Conservatives, or, at the very least, low-key Christians.

    After Dean’s defeat, DFA went down to that level and even to the level of County Commissioners, and started raising money for the next generation of House and Senate members, including Barack Obama. One of their protoges, Mary Jo Kilroy, is currently my Congressperson after squeaking it out over Deborah Pryce in a heavily gerrymandered Republican district.

    We actually have a very promising Republican guy in the Ohio State Senate by the name of Jim Hughes, who has always run the kind of sensible campaigns, without the fundies’ whoop-de-do, that would be right up your alley.

  • Joseph Marshall · October 17, 2009 at 12:05 pm

    Carolyn, what the heck is “economic gravitas”? I have always found Mitt Romney to be presentable as a candidate, though as a Democrat, I would thoroughly prefer to put Obama against Palin, whom I have very little respect for. And Huckabee is simply the Republican version of the pliant Arkansas politics that made the early career of Bill Clinton. And this was the part about Clinton that I liked least.

    And I must say I think you are wrong about Obama’s greatest potential weakness. I’m pretty certain that it will be Afghanistan. I have studied the change since 1980 in the behavior of the Stock Market, the employment figures, and the percentage in poverty. What has changed is that before 1980 these three things were in sync: employment and income rose in tandem with the recovery of the market. Since 1980 employment has lagged behind the rising Stock Market by as much as two years, picking up only after very significant gains have been made in equities, and peaking very close to the next crash [since 1980 there has always been a "next crash"]. Before 1980 employment would drop first and the Market would follow.

    Given the spending program Obama has outlined, I strongly expect both the Market and the employment figures to be high and rising in 2012 with the probable next crash about 2016 and maybe as late as 2018.

    The war however, is unlikely to be over by 2012 [unless the US and Europe simply withdraw and concede the place to the Taliban] and it’s end is likely to be nowhere in sight. The ball was dropped there by you-know-who all the way back in 2003 and the neglect of the situation for the next 5 years is probably not repairable.

  • MJBrutus · October 17, 2009 at 1:12 pm

    @Joseph Marshall

    Speaking as an Atheist, I wholeheartedly support Romney and can’t stand the Huckster. One difference which you seem not to comprehend is that Romney does not proselytize and does not seek to use high office to push his beliefs on others. I hold no one’s religion against them, but I appreciate the respect of others leaving my beliefs to me! Romney could be a Scientologist for all I care.

    Going beyond the religious issues, Huckabee is a big government “compassionate Conservative.” His political pedigree is not at all dissimilar to McCain and Bush. I have no wish to see another one of those lead our cause, thank you.

  • 2012 Ain’t Nothing But A Number « Around The Sphere · October 17, 2009 at 1:14 pm

    [...] Andrew Stuttaford at Secular Right: Palin’s pain has been Huckabee’s gain, it seems, as he appears to have picked up some of her support. Given the selection on offer, it’s probably not that surprising that Mitt Romney emerges as the preferred candidate of the wicked secular right (or at least among those Republicans “who attend church once a month or less”). Meanwhile, Pawlenty’s nod to the Intelligent Design crowd doesn’t (I’m delighted to say) seem to have done him much good so far. He’s the candidate that GOP voters would least like to see as the party’s pick, although I suspect that glorious distinction may in reality simply reflect the fact that Pawlenty is just not that well-known. Perhaps he should try coming out for UFOs next time. [...]

  • Lee · October 17, 2009 at 2:00 pm

    I’m not exactly sure why you have to express such hateful views of people of faith. I assume that’s what passes for enlightenment in some circles, but it seems that the same old bigotry that once fueled the darks days of religious intollerance within the church is alive and well in the secular community. Such views have recently seemed more at home in the Democrat party. I hope your views here don’t indicate that prejudice and anti-Christian hatred are to become a part of the Republican party too. It’s starting to feel as though standing for the principles and beliefs that were at the very founding of this nation is enough to make you a hated minorty in our time. So much for the tolerant, enlightened left!

  • Joseph Marshall · October 17, 2009 at 3:23 pm

    I apologize to all that I appear to have offended. I have thoughtlessly gone too far with my comment.

    The only thing I would add is that the Christians I’m used to hanging around with on the Net are Catholics, and they are very precise about what they believe and what they don’t. They also think it important, as do I, and are willing to examine it in some detail with those of other faiths or none.

  • Joseph · October 17, 2009 at 3:47 pm

    I am ashamed at my fellow Republicans here who try to tout Romney as anything close to Conservative. Romneycare is the original Obamacare. Tons of mandates, fees (taxes), and deficits run rampant in Mass because of Mitt Romney. He raised more revenue by hiking FEES (TAXES) in four years than Huckabee did in 10.5 years. At least Huckabee left a $850 million surplus.

    If you really want to know what people who have experience know, look at what percentage of the vote Romney got in Mass and Huckabee got in Arkansas during the primaries. These are the people who have lived under their leadership.

    On a side note, Huckabee has never said anything about forcing prayer back into schools or forcing schools to teach Creationism. He has never forced his religion on anyone during the 10.5 years as Governor. He was re-elected to that office twice. He managed to attract 48% of the African-American vote in a very democratic leaning state at the local level.

    The truth is out there if you actually look and stop believing what the Republican establishment and elites tell you.

  • sg · October 17, 2009 at 5:39 pm

    It would be helpful to actually discuss what the people did in office. If they saved money and made rational decisions isn’t that all we can really ask for? There is no perfect candidate. Ask yourself honestly if you could vote for someone that you personally detest if they will actually do what you want. Unfortunately politics is a popularity contest based on emotions, hence the Obama victory. It is very hard to be objective about the professional record of someone when you find them detestable even if your dislike is about something not related to job performance.

  • Clark · October 17, 2009 at 8:27 pm

    His father was part of a group that started a liberal wing of the Mormon church back in the 60’s

    ??? I have no idea what that even means.

    Regarding Romney and healthcare, I recognize I may be in the minority, but I think one problem Republicans have is running on no health reform rather than presenting a real alternative to Obama and Reid’s plans. I think Romney’s for all its problems is a step in the right direction. I think folks in Mass were just too naive regarding what it would cost. (As I think Obama and company are)

  • Susan · October 18, 2009 at 12:26 pm

    Very interesting that Huckabee is outpolling Palin among the evangelicals. I had the impression she had what amounts to a cult following among them.

  • Author comment by David Hume · October 18, 2009 at 12:44 pm

    Very interesting that Huckabee is outpolling Palin among the evangelicals. I had the impression she had what amounts to a cult following among them.

    the two do not necessarily contradict. people may have a stronger visceral attachment to sarah palin, but assume she is not a viable political candidate compared to huckabee.

  • Susan · October 18, 2009 at 12:55 pm

    No, they don’t necessarily contradict, but if you read the comments of Palin’s supporters, it’s clear they seem to consider her the ONLY viable candidate. They hate Huckabee.

    What the polling data suggest, to me anyway, is that her ardent fan base may be smaller than it claims to be.

  • Ann · October 18, 2009 at 7:39 pm

    That’s funny that Romney doesn’t strike you as a fundamentalist Mormon. He was a Bishop in the Mormon faith. He just doesn’t speak about his faith because he doesn’t want people to learn about the Mormon religion and possibly not vote for him.

    Mike Huckabee was too aggressive with his “faith” during the 2008 election. I think his thinking was that if the Christian leaders knew he had been a pastor and people knew he lived his Christian faith, he would get their support. Unfortunately, it didn’t work out that way. I don’t believe he will stress his Christian faith in 2012, and if you go by his past record as Gov. in Arkansas, he didn’t push his religion on them and promised not to do that as President. He has stated that being a Christian identifies who he is..what he means is that he tries to live his life as a Christian every day.

    Mitt Romney and Club for Growth spent millions of dollars putting out half-truth ads about Mike Huckabee and lots of people believe them to be true. Also, the fact that he made that stupid Mormon comment to the reporter lead all the Mormons to believe he is a bigot which is absolutely not true. He just doesn’t like Mitt Romney because he doesn’t have any principles. He will change himself to whatever he thinks the people will vote for him to be. For example, in the 2008 election, he ran as a Social Conservative. One of his team recently said that it was a mistake for Romney to have done that. In 2012, he wants to run as a moderate like McCain did last time and get the Independent and Moderate Dem voters who are disallusioned with Obama. You see he is repackaging himself again. During the primaries it was Romney who called McCain a liberal Republican and now he wants to be just like him!!! How can anybody believe what he says..he changes so often?? I don’t trust him at all. If he made President and a new poll came out that the majority of Americans were against abortion, Romney would change his mind again because he would want a second term.

    You can believe that Mike Huckabee means what he says, and says what he means. He has always had the same principles and you would know what kind of a man he would be as our President. He grew up poor, governed in a very poor state and relates to the middle class in America better than any other politician. He knows their needs and understands them. He would make a great President for the rich, the middle class and the poor in America.

  • PTAMominMaryland · October 20, 2009 at 9:01 am

    from http://www.massresistance.org ………
    Romney’s dismal record as the Republican leader in Massachusetts

    Romney pledged to build the Massachusetts Republican Party, but in fact he did almost nothing. During his tenure there were two elections for the entire Legislature (2004 and 2006). In each election the Republicans lost seats. Republicans now hold the fewest seats in the Legislature since the Civil War.
    During the four years of Romney’s tenure, the number of registered Republicans in Massachusetts fell by 31,000. During that same period, the Massachusetts Democratic Party gained 30,000.
    – Boston Globe 11/2/2006
    In the 2006 elections, most offices were not even challenged by Republican candidates. In the November general election for the six statewide Massachusetts constitutional offices there were more Green-Rainbow Party candidates on the ballot than Republicans!
    The party’s slide has been so precipitous that Republicans yesterday did not contest 130 of 200 legislative seats, fielded a challenger in only three of 10 congressional districts, and put up fewer candidates for statewide office (three) than the Green-Rainbow Party (four).
    – Boston Globe, 11/8/2006

    In 2006, while Romney was chairman of the National Republican Governors Association – a group dedicated to electing more Republican governors – his own hand-picked Republican successor as governor lost badly to the Democrat, despite the fact that Republicans have held the governorship in Massachusetts since 1990. Romney largely ignored the Massachusetts elections and spent most of the time during the campaign out of state building his presidential campaign. He came back and publicly campaigned for the Republican candidate the day before the general election!
    “Locally, this is a rebuke to Mitt Romney and checking out within six months after being elected and having accomplished almost nothing,” said [Jim] Rappaport [former chairman of the state Republican Party].
    – Boston Globe, 11/8/2006

    “Romney arrived on the scene with great promise, but is leaving the Republican Party here in shambles. Not only are the Republicans yielding the governor’s office for the first time in 16 years, but registered Republicans have fallen by 31,000 since Romney took office, and their legislative presence is at historic lows. But it worked out fine for him: He is now chasing the prize he really covets, the presidency.”
    – Boston Globe 11/8/2006
    “The Massachusetts Republican Party died last Tuesday. The cause of death: failed leadership. The party is survived by a few leftover legislators and a handful of county officials and grassroots activists who have been ignored for years. Services will be public and a mass exodus of taxpayers will follow. In lieu of flowers, send messages to New Hampshire Republican voters warning them about a certain presidential candidate named Romney.”
    – Boston Herald, 11/12/2006

  • PTAMominMaryland · October 20, 2009 at 9:11 am

    …. James Rappaport, former head of the Massachusetts Republican Party held a press conference …to announce his endorsement of Rudy Giuliani, …Rappaport, who served State Chairman of the Massachusetts Republican Party when Romney was governor, said Romney “has a strong record of showmanship as opposed to actual performance.” On his relationship with the State Legislature, “His word is no good … Mitt Romney would say one thing in a meeting and literally go out of the meeting to the press and tell the opposite story. There was no desire in the legislature to be accommodating to him because they couldn’t trust him…. Romney will be clear today on what he believes today, and he’ll be clear tomorrow on what he believes tomorrow, but they may be different things.”

  • Susan · October 20, 2009 at 9:47 am

    @John

    Why would you want to do that? If you form a third party you marginalize yourself as well as the party from which you split. Or is that the true goal?

  • sg · October 20, 2009 at 11:51 am

    “During the four years of Romney’s tenure, the number of registered Republicans in Massachusetts fell by 31,000. During that same period, the Massachusetts Democratic Party gained 30,000.”

    Lemme guess. 31,000 old white folks died and were replaced by a different younger demographic of about 30,000.

    Wonder who that could be.

    Fun diversity maps at http://diversitydata.sph.harvard.edu/

  • Clark · October 20, 2009 at 8:46 pm

    That’s funny that Romney doesn’t strike you as a fundamentalist Mormon. He was a Bishop in the Mormon faith. He just doesn’t speak about his faith because he doesn’t want people to learn about the Mormon religion and possibly not vote for him.

    While I agree with the last part (he doesn’t want to alienate Evangelical voters who tend to think Mormons a cult) the first part seems odd. Unless you are using “fundamentalist” in some odd sense I’m not familiar with. Surely one could be a Bishop without being a fundamentalist. (One should also note that to a Mormon the term fundamentalist tends to conjure images of polygamist sects and tends to get people excommunicated rather swiftly)

    As to Romney’s tenure in Massachusetts, I’ve heard mixed things. I will say that I’ve been amazingly disheartened by his apparent tendency towards blatant opportunism. Some suggest that’s just his poor image handling. I tend to think there’s something deeper. Originally I supported him but by the time February had rolled around in the primaries I was at the “a pox on all of them” stage.

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