Huckabee Is No Better Than the Rest of the Pathetic GOP Pygmies.



Howie Klein: In Arkansas people know him as an untrustworthy, vicious and distinctly unfriendly purveyor of hard partisan politics.


I woke up a little late this morning and flicked on CNN while I was getting myself together. Mike Huckabee had just joined Wolf Blintzer for a chat. Until last week, when a poll of likely Republican caucus goers in Iowa-- a subset of bigots, rubes and superstitious kooks who don't deserve to influence the outcome of a vote for anything past Miss Sioux City-- showed Huckabee catching up with Mitt Romney in the pointless race for the GOP nomination (at least in Iowa), no one was taking Huckabee seriously. Well wrestlers and professional clowns were.

Last week respected Arkansas Times journalist Max Brantley did an excellent Huckabee expose at Salon, The Dark Side of Mike Huckabee. The subtitle gives it away: "The national media seems to have a crush on our ex-governor, but here in Arkansas, we know better." Huckabee's main goal on CNN this morning was to come across as a friendly, common sense outsider with an easy sense of humor who wants to go to Washington to clean it up. Sounds familiar.

But in Arkansas people know him as an untrustworthy, vicious and distinctly unfriendly purveyor of hard partisan politics. And an incompetent. Even allies call him "petty," "vindictive," and "thin-skinned," and the many who do not admire him, like Brantley, go much further. In his very first campaign (1992), a failed run for the U.S. Senate, "Huckabee revealed an enduring weakness as glaring as that other Arkansas governor's fondness for women. Huckabee seems to love loot and has a dismissive attitude toward ethics, campaign finance rules and propriety in general. Since that first, failed campaign, the ethical questions have multiplied."

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Actually, I thought some of Huckabee's values were not at all "Republicanlike" if there is such a word. He actually stated some time ago that he would do everything in his power to help poor children obtain affordable health insurance and he also mentioned that he was concerned about the environment... That puts him far above the rest of the Republican candidates in my book.

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