Mike Huckabee

Dozens of GOP Leaders Declare Solidarity With Those Who Want To See Homosexuality Outlawed

Last week when Jeremy Hooper discovered that the Family Research Council was planning to roll out a campaign fighting back against the Southern Poverty Law Center's designation of the organization as an anti-gay hate group, we noted that FRC was asking people to sign on to the campaign to "stand in solidarity with Family Research Council, American Family Association, Concerned Women of America, National Organization for Marriage, Liberty Counsel and other pro-family organizations that are working to protect and promote natural marriage and family."

By doing so, we pointed out, any one who added their name was essentially declaring that they stood shoulder-to-shoulder with groups that proclaim:

Today, FRC announced that it was running this open letter [PDF] in both Politico and The Washington Examiner and that the effort had the support of dozens of Republican members of Congress and conservative leaders:

Family Research Council (FRC) announced the placement of a full-page open letter in today's print editions of Politico and the Washington Examiner responding to the Southern Poverty Law Center's (SPLC) recent attacks on FRC and other groups.

SPLC has targeted FRC and other organizations that uphold Judeo-Christian moral views, including marriage as the union of a man and a woman. The open letter, signed by more than 150 organizational leaders, Members of Congress and other elected officials, calls for a "vigorous but responsible exercise of the First Amendment rights of free speech and religious liberty that are the birthright of all Americans."

The open letter was signed by many current and former elected and government officials including Speaker-designate John Boehner, Majority Leader-elect Eric Cantor, U.S. Reps Mike Pence (R-IN), Michele Bachmann (R-MN), John Carter (R-TX), John Fleming (R-LA,) Trent Franks (R-AZ), Louie Gohmert (R-TX,) Gregg Harper (R-MS), Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), Jim Jordan (R-OH), Steve King (R-IA,) Don Manzullo (R-IL), Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), Joe Pitts (R-PA), Peter Roskam (R-LA), Lamar Smith (R-TX,) Steve Scalise (R-LA,) Fred Upton (R-MI), U.S. Senators Jim DeMint (R-SC), Jim Inhofe (R-OK,) David Vitter (R-LA), Roger Wicker (R-MS), Sam Brownback (Gov.-elect, Kansas), Governor Bobby Jindal, former Governor Mike Huckabee, Governor Tim Pawlenty, former Senator Rick Santorum, Edwin Meese III, former Attorney General of the United States, and Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli.

For the record, here is the complete list of leaders who have publicly declared their solidarity with SPLC-designated anti-gay hate groups who want to see gays barred from serving in public office and homosexuality made illegal: 

Alaska Family Council Jim Minnery - President
American College of Pediatricians Tom Benton, MD - President
American Conservative Union Foundation Cleta Mitchell - Chairman
American Decency Association Bill Johnson - President
American Family Association Tim Wildmon - President
American Family Association of Pennsylvania Diane Gramley - President
American Principles Project Andresen Blom - Executive Director
American Values Gary Bauer - President
Association of Maryland Families Derek McCoy - President
Best-Selling Author and Host of Morning in America Dr. William J. Bennett
Calvary Chapel Jack Hibbs - Senior Pastor
Cardinal Newman Society Patrick Reilly - President
Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights Bill Donohue - President
CCV of Indiana PAC Joseph Sergio, Ph.D - Chairman
Center for Arizona Policy Cathi Herrod - President
Center for Law and Social Strategy Mark Spengler - Executive Director
Center for Security Policy Frank Gaffney - President and CEO
Center for Urban Renewal and Education Star Parker - President
Christian Civic League of Maine Carroll Conley - Executive Director
Christian Medical Association David Stevens - CEO
CitizenLink Tom Minnery - Senior Vice President, Public Policy
Citizens for Community Values Phil Burress - President
Citizens for Community Values of Indiana Patrick Mangan - Executive Director
CNSNews.com Chris Johnson - News Correspondant
CNSNews.com Eric Scheiner - Senior Video Producer
Coalition for Marriage and FamilyTom Shields - Chairman
Colorado Family Action Jessica Haverkate - Director
Committee for Justice Curt Levey - Executive Director
Concerned Citizens for Family Values of Connecticut Ray Kastner - President
Concerned Women For America Penny Nance - CEO
Concerned Women for American Wendy Wright - President
ConservativeHQ.com Richard Viguerie - Chairman
Coral Ridge Ministries Robert Knight - Senior Writer
Coral Ridge Ministries Hector Padron - Executive Vice President
Cornerstone Action, NH Kevin Smith - Executive Director
Cornerstone Family Council of ID Julie Lynde - Executive Director
Cornwall Alliance for the Stewardship of Creation E. Calvin Beisner, Ph.D. - National Spokesman
Delaware Family Policy Council Nicole Theis - Executive Director
Design4 Marketing Communications Clint Cline - President
Eagle Forum Phyllis Schlafly - President
Ethics and Public Policy Center Rick Santorum - Senior Fellow
Faith Christian Fellowship Church The Rev Dr. R. Edgar Bonniwell - Senior Pastor
Family Action Council of Tennessee David Fowler - President
Family First (Nebraska FPC) Dave Bydalek Bydalek - Executive Director
Family Institute of Connecticut Peter Wolfgang - Executive Director
Florida Family Policy Counci lJohn Stemberger - President and General Counsel
ForAmerica David Bozell - Executive Director
Generals International Cindy Jacobs - President
Illinois Family Institute David Smith - Executive Director
Iowa Family Policy Center Chuck Hurley - President
Jews Offering New Alternatives to Homosexuality Elaine Silodor Berk - Director
Judicial Action Group Phillip Jauregui - President
Kansas Sam Brownback - Governor-elect
Kansas Family Policy Council Donna Lippoldt - Executive Director
Kingdom Warriors Ministry William Boykin - LTG(R) USArmy
Landmark Legal Foundation Mark Levin - President
Leadership Institute Morton Blackwell - President
Let Freedom Ring Colin Hanna - President
Liberty Center for Law and Policy Mandi Campbell - Legal Director
Liberty Counsel Matt Barber - Director of Cultural Affairs
Liberty Counsel Mathew Staver - Founder and Chairman
Liberty Institute Kelly Shackelford
Louisiana Bobby Jindal - Governor
Louisiana Family Forum Action Gene Mills - President
Massachusetts Family Institute Kris Mineau - President
Media Research Center Matthew Balan - news analyst
Media Research CenterL. Brent Bozell - Founder and President
Media Research Center Kyle Drennen - News Analyst
Media Research Center Matthew Hadro
Mike Huckabee - Former Governor, TV/ Radio Commentator
Minnesota Family Council David Eaton - Chairman
Minnesota Family Council John Helmberger - Chief Executive Officer
Mission America Linda Harvey - President
Missouri Family Policy Council Joe Ortwerth - Executive Director
National Organization for Marriage Brian Brown - President
National Organization for Marriage Maggie Gallagher - Chairman
National Organization for Marriage - Rhode Island Christopher Plante - Executive Director
National Review Rich Lowry - Editor
Nationally Syndicated Radio Talkshow Host Janet Parshall
Nevada Concerned Citizens Richard Ziser - Director
New Jersey Family First Len Deo - Founder & President
New Yorker's Family Research Foundation Rev. Tom Stiles
New Yorkers for Constitutional Freedoms Rev. Jason McGuire
North Dakota Family Alliance Tom Freier - Executive Director
Ohio Faith and Freedom Coalition Ken Blackwell - Chairman
Priests For LifeFr. Frank Pavone - National Director
Prison Fellowship and The Colson Center for Christian Worldview Chuck Colson - Founder
Public Service Research Foundation David Denholm - President
Radio America Franklin Raff - Sr. Executive Producer
Rappahannock Ventures WillIam Walton - Chairman
ReAL Action Rick Tyler - Chairman
RedState Erick-Woods Erickson - Editor
Renewing American Leadership Jim Garlow - Chairman
Republican Party of Louisiana Roger Villere, Jr. - Chairman
Restore America David Crowe - President
Retired Rensselaer Broekhuizen - Pastor
RightMarch.com William Greene - President
Shirley & Banister Public Affairs Diana Banister - Vice President
Southern Baptist Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission Dr. Richard Land - President
State of Minnesota Tim Pawlenty - Governor
The American Spectator Alfred Regnery - Publisher
The Coalition of Conscience Michael Brown, Ph.D. - Director
The Diana Davis Spencer Foundation Abby Moffat - Vice President and COO
The Family Foundation of VirginiaVictoria Cobb - President
The Family Policy Council of WVJeremiah Dys, Esq. - President and General Counsel
The National Legal Foundation Steven Fitschen - President
THE New Voice, Inc.Herman Cain - CEO and President
The Oak InititativeRick Joyner - President
The Washington Examiner Mark Tapscott - Editorial Page Editor
TheCall Louis Engle - President
Tradition, Family, Property, Inc.C. Preston Noell III - President
Traditional Values Coalition Jody Hutchens - Regional Director
Traditional Values Coalition Andrea Lafferty - Executive Director
U.S. Congress Senator David Vitter - (R-LA)
U.S. Congress Senator Roger Wicker - (R-MS)
U.S. House of Representatives Congresswoman Michele Bachmann - (R-MN)
U.S. House of Representatives Speaker-designate John Boehner - (R-OH)
U.S. House of Representatives Majority Leader-elect Eric Cantor - (R-VA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman John Fleming, M.D. - (R-LA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Trent Franks - (R-AZ)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Louie Gohmert - (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Jeb Henserling - (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Jim Jordan - (R-OH)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Steve King - (R-IA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Donald Manzullo - (R-IL)
U.S. House of Representative sCongressman Kevin McCarthy - (R-CA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman-elect Alan Nunnelee - (R-MS)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Mike Pence - (R-IN)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Joe Pitts - (R-PA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Peter Roskam - (R-IL)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Steve Scalise - (R-LA)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Lamar Smith - (R-TX)
U.S. House of Representatives Congressman Fred Upton - (R-MI)
United States SenateJim DeMint - Senator
Virginia Ken Cuccinelli - Attorney General
Western Center for Journalism Floyd Brown - President
Wisconsin Family Action Julaine Appling - President
WMtek Corp. Dan Pennell - CEO
WND.com Joseph Farah - Chief Executive Officer

Right Wing Leftovers

  • For some reason, Michael Steele thinks he has a chance of getting re-elected as Chairman of the RNC.  Good luck with that.
  • Want to spend ten minutes listening to Mike Huckabee talk about playing bass guitar?  Well, you are in luck.
  • Anti-choice activists have big plans for when Republicans take over state legislatures.
  • Focus on the Family is airing its interview with George W. Bush and it was surprisingly dull.
  • Finally, the American Decency Association reports that "shoppers are appalled at the eroticism portrayed" by Victoria's Secret, including "models are in sexually explicit poses [and some that] have promoted lesbianism."

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 12/14/10

Mike Huckabee

Religious Right: LGBT activists call on Huckabee to break ties with Lou Engle (Advocate, 12/13).

2012: Believes he is best prepared to “bring in ethnic voters than most Republicans” (National Journal, 12/13).

Obama: Says the President was “amateurish,” less difficult to defeat in 2012 than Republican opponents (National Journal, 12/8).

Sarah Palin

Haiti: Travels to Haiti with Franklin Graham, Greta van Susteren (CBS News, 12/13).

Foreign affairs: Plans trips to Israel and UK, wants to meet Margaret Thatcher (NY Post, 12/9).

Ron Paul

WikiLeaks: Claims that WikiLeaks exposes failure of neoconservative foreign policy (The Nation, 12/13).

Tea Party: Paul’s ideas gain traction as House GOP embraces the Tea Party (NYT, 12/12).

Tim Pawlenty

Religious Right: Talks about faith on Christian Broadcasting Network profile (MN Independent, 12/13).

Labor: Pens WSJ Op-Ed criticizing public employee labor unions as “exploiters” (WSJ, 12/13).

Mike Pence

Obama: Says that the President wants American people to behave “like a dog” and “simply to obey” (US News, 12/13).

South Carolina: Hosts GOP fundraiser in early-primary state with Tea Party favorite and Gov-Elect Nikki Haley (Politico, 12/13).

GOP: George Will looks into Pence’s appeal in the Republican base (WaPo, 12/8).

Mitt Romney

Op-Ed: Slams compromise tax plan in USA Today (USA Today, 12/14).

Independents: Public Policy Poll finds Romney most popular Republican among independent voters (GOP12, 12/13).

Poll: Only GOP contender who leads Obama in Marist poll match up (McClatchy, 12/10).

Rick Santorum

Pennsylvania: Republicans in PA react to Santorum’s potential presidential run (Tribune Review, 12/12).

John Thune

Iowa: Thune’s experience in retail politics in rural, neighboring South Dakota to help bid in Iowa (Politico, 12/12).

Budget: Tells Hannity that unemployment extensions should be paid for but tax cuts shouldn’t (ThinkProgress, 12/9).

Right Wing Leftovers

  • What does Liberty University have in common with companies like Microsoft and Google?  A AA rating which allowed it to raise $120 million through the sale of bonds yesterday.
  • Al Mohler says that claims that Jesus will return on May 21, 2011 is an "embarrassment" to the Christian Church.
  • Ralph Reed says President Obama betrayed his principles with the tax cut compromise. Of course, Reed exploited his Christian allies on behalf of Jack Abramoff and gambling interests. 
  • Mike Huckabee is still mad that he gets pigeonholed as the "faith candidate."
  • Finally, mark your calendars because it looks like the Freedom Federation will be hosting another Awakening conference in April 2011.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 12/07/10

Newt Gingrich

2012: Cillizza profiles Gingrich’s closest aides as he readies possible bid (The Fix, 12/6).

Iowa: Gingrich’s “American Solutions” donated $107,500 to Iowa politicians and state GOP (US News, 12/3).

Immigration: Voices support for immigration reform to conservative Latino convention (Politico, 12/2).

Mike Huckabee

2012: Seriously considers bid as Iowa and South Carolina polls look favorable to candidacy (Politico, 12/6).

Religious Right: Defends FRC from “hate group” label, asks if “60 percent of America is a hate group?” (Walton Sun, 12/5).

Book: New book tour seems like a “dry run for presidency” (Fresno Bee, 12/2).

Sarah Palin

GOP: Declines Tea Party Nation’s draft campaign to have Palin run for RNC Chair (CNN, 12/6).

Reality TV: TV career takes off as the latest episode of “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” features Reality TV star Kate Gosselin (Forbes, 12/6).

Religious Right: Kathleen Kennedy Townsend writes op-ed challenging Palin’s views on church-state separation (WaPo, 12/3).

Tim Pawlenty

Book: AP looks into the ghostwriter of Pawlenty’s book “Courage to Stand” (AP, 12/7).

Experience: Defends record as governor, calling himself a stalwart conservative in a progressive state (Politico, 12/5).

PAC: Pawlenty’s Freedom First PAC spent over $300,000 in last weeks before election (CNN, 12/2).

Mitt Romney

Business: Set to address small business convention in Las Vegas (RCP, 12/6).

Foreign Affairs: Pens op-ed criticizing START Treaty (Boston Globe, 12/3).

FOX: Tells Jay Leno that Fox News job is “not in the cards” (The Cutline, 12/2).

Rick Santorum

PAC: Santorum’s Keystone PAC focused on helping candidates in Iowa and South Carolina (CNN, 12/6).

South Carolina: Speaks to GOP county organizations, including a roast for retiring congressmen (Post & Courier, 12/6).

Religious Right: Plans to make another speech criticizing Kennedy’s views of separation of church and state (The Hill, 12/5).

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Mike Huckabee responds to the SPLC designation of FRC as a hate group: "Does that mean that that 60 percent of America is a hate group?"
  • Bob Vander Plaats discusses the Iowa judicial retention campaign with Focus on the Family.
  • Gary Bauer says the attempted terrorist attack in Portland, Oregon was a "little late to the war on Christianity. Radical Islam’s secular enablers have been driving Christianity from the public square for decades."
  • Leaders from Anglican, Baptist, Catholic, Evangelical, Jewish, Lutheran, Mormon, Orthodox, Pentecostal and Sikh communities have signed on to a document entitled “The Protection of Marriage: A Shared Commitment."
  • Apparently, the Pope's Cologne is a real thing and you can buy it.
  • Finally, Focus on the Family's Jim Daly interviewed George W. Bush today for a broadcast to air next week:

Huckabee Irked Nobody Considers Him a 2012 Front-Runner

Ever since losing the Republican primary to John McCain in 2008, Mike Huckabee has repeatedly been asked if he plans to make another run for the White House in 2012.  And his answer has always been the same: "I don't know.  Maybe."

As Huckabee made clear during his last try, he is not independently wealthy and actually had to take breaks from campaigning in order to deliver paid speechs in order to have any sort of income.  He's now got several different projects that provide a nice living, but he'd have to give them up if he decided to run for president and once again find himself without a steady income. 

Given these constraints and Huckabee's perpetually nonchalant "maybe I will, maybe I won't" attitude, he's frequently left off the list of possible 2012 GOP candidates ... and that apparently irks him to no end:

Huckabee, for one, is tired of being left out of the conversation and sounds increasingly like a candidate.

“I just don’t understand how it is that a person can read these polls day after day and the narrative is constantly everybody but me,” he told POLITICO. “Whether I do it or not, the fact is that if one looks at the overall body of information that’s available, nobody would be in a better position to take it all the way to November.”

Few politicians who have felt – as Huckabee did for a moment in 2008 – a real shot at the presidency pass on a second run. That Huckabee’s national footprint, along with his bank account, has grown only strengthens the rationale for a second shot.

“The polls are consistently favorable, putting me either at the top of every poll or right near it. It’s hard to ignore that, having swum in that water before when I barely registered in those very kinds of polls,” he said.

Huckabee said he’s never wavered in seriously considering a bid, and interviews with the former Arkansas governor and much of his small inner circle suggest that he may be more likely to run than is widely presumed – and has recently shifted toward considering it more seriously.    

I, for one, welcome this development, as we've spent years chronicling Huckabee's myriad ties to radical right-wing activists and candidates and would hate to see all of that work go to waste.

Huckabee Calls for Execution of Those Responsible For WikiLeaks Documents

Via the Florida Independent, we see that Mike Huckabee delivered a speech at the Ronald Reagan Library in Simi Valley, CA yesterday and also gave a short interview to local media during which he was asked about the latest WikiLeaks documents, to which he responded by calling for the execution of the person (or persons) responsible for leaking the documents and blasted the New York Times for reporting on them:

Who ever in our government leaked that information is guilty of treason and I think anything less than execution too kind a penalty. They put Americans lives at risk. They’ve put relationships that will take decades to rebuild at risk, and they knew full well that they were handling sensitive documents. They were entrusted and anyone who had access to that level of information was not only a person who understood what their rules were, but they also signed, under oath, a commitment that they would not violate it. They did. And I believe they have committed treason against this country and any lives they endanger, they’re personally responsible for and the blood is on their hands.

And in addition to their reckless irresponsibility and act criminal intent, I think the New York Times has shown an utter reckless disregard for any responsible journalism by printing something that they know they have obtained in a way that is not appropriate.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/30/10

John Bolton

2012: Bush’s UN Ambassador considers presidential bid to bring emphasis to “foreign and national security issues” (Politico, 11/28).

Foreign Affairs: Writes Op-Ed against reviving six-party talks with North Korea (LA Times, 11/23).

Newt Gingrich

South Carolina: Set to address key Republican event in South Carolina (The Spartanburg Herald Journal, 11/28).

GOP: Scheduled to speak at conservative Latino forum on December 2nd (The Americano).

Mike Huckabee

Health Care: Says that the country doesn’t “have a health care crisis. We have a health crisis” (The Bakersfield Californian, 11/26).

Religious Right: May split Evangelical, women’s vote with Sarah Palin (The Fix, 11/23).

2012: Claims to be undecided about run in interview during his children’s book tour (Arizona Republic, 11/23).

Sarah Palin

Government: Blasts Obama over leaks, dubs WikiLeaks head a terrorist (Daily Mail, 11/30).

GOP: Joe Scarborough knocks Palin for mocking Ronald Reagan and George HW Bush, says she “embarrasses herself” (Politico, 11/30).

Women: Jamie Stiehm takes aim at Palin’s “faux-feminism” and claims Palin is a detriment to women in politics (US News & World Report, 11/30).

Health: Criticizes Michelle Obama’s “anti-obesity thing” (Essence, 11/27).

Mitt Romney

GOP: Wins support from George HW and Barbara Bush (LA Times, 11/24).

Poll: Leads other prospective presidential candidates with 20% support (Maris, 11/23).

Rick Santorum

New Hampshire: Tells NH audience he wants earmarks banned, even though he was an earmarker (Morning Call, 11/29).

Foreign Affairs: Blasts Obama over handling of Iran and WikiLeaks (AP, 11/30).

John Thune

2012: Thune’s chances of winning nomination strong according to political markets (Politico, 11/30).

Religious Right Wants Jewish TX House Speaker Replaced With a "True Christian" Conservative

Back in 2009, a battle erupted in the Texas House of Representatives as Republicans fought over which member would serve as Speaker of the House.  The Religious Right lined up behind Tom Craddick, but everyone else supported Joe Straus who ended up winning, leading Rick Scarborough to decry it as a "coup."

And now a similar battle is unfolding yet again, as the same coalition of right-wing activists have mounted an effort to replace Straus with someone more inclined to do their bidding:

A group of conservative groups is trying to capitalize on that frustration, issuing a letter Nov. 4 calling for a new Speaker. The signatories include representatives from a lot of major conservative groups, including Texans for Fiscal Responsibility, Texas Right to Life, Americans for Prosperity, the Texas Eagle Forum, [Vision America,] Liberty Institute, former Republican Party of Texas Chairman Cathie Adams, and former Republican Party of Texas vice-chairman David Barton. Of particular concern to grass roots conservatives is the fate of bills requiring showing photo ID prior to voting and bills that limit property taxes.

And, not surprisingly, the effort has started to take on religious overtones

[A] handful of outside socially conservative groups are running a fairly deceitful but noisy campaign trying to pressure lawmakers who actually like the speaker’s management style to vote against him.

They blame him for the failure of the sonogram bill but the pro-life Texans for Life said the claim is false. They blame him for the failure of voter ID by permitting the Democratic filibuster, but that’s false. Straus followed the direction of his colleagues in the Republican caucus

They said that Straus appointed moderate chairman, but the budget under Straus was more fiscally conservative than the last one under Craddick.

Now, the so-called grassroots effort has crossed over the line with coordinated email and robocall programs calling for a true Christian speaker. Straus is Jewish.

The Texas Freedom Network reports that supporters have also been sending out emails explaining the importance of replaced Straus with a Christian:

Has the religious right’s effort to topple Texas House Speaker Joe Straus become an anti-Semitic smear campaign? Quorum Report (subscription required) has now posted various e-mails from groups and individuals opposed to Straus, who is Jewish. Excerpts:

“Straus is going down in Jesus name.”

“[W]e finally found a Christian conservative who decided not to be pushed around by the Joe Straus thugs.”

Another e-mail calls for replacing Straus as House Speaker so

“…that our nation will again prosper and hold to values that the Christians and Republicans hold so dear in their souls.”

Straus only needs the support of 76 members and has reportedly already secured pledges from nearly twice that number, but his opponents are not giving up. 

In fact, just today, Mike Huckabee through his support behind challenger Ken Paxton:

While Republicans across Texas and across the nation had many great victories on November 2nd, the battle for true conservatism is not over. Now, as the majority Party in many State Houses, and the U.S. House, Republicans have the duty and ability to select strong conservatives to be new Speakers of the House. That position should be filled by one who has the knowledge, ability and relationships to create and push a strong conservative agenda. In Texas, that’s Ken Paxton.

Huck PAC and I are pleased to again endorse Ken, this time for Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives.

Soon to start his fifth term in office, Ken has twice been named "Texas Taxpayer Hero" by Texans for Fiscal Responsibility. Ken proudly believes in the sanctity of life, and supporting conservative family values like traditional marriage between one man and one woman. Ken recognizes that the matters of social issues directly impact our economy, and I’m confident having Ken’s conservative voice lead the new Texas House of Representatives will result in some great accomplishments.

I hope you will join me in supporting Ken Paxton. Texas is fortunate to have him serving in the State House, let’s make sure we make him the next Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Mike Huckabee is raising funds for Joe Miller.
  • A handful of right-wing activsts are warning Congress not to confirm any nominees during the lame duck session.
  • Focus on the Family's "Day of Dialogue" aims to fight homosexuality just like Jesus would.
  • The Kansas law license of Phill Kline has been suspended for the fourth time.
  • James Dobson continues to air his decade-old grievances against the GOP.
  • Sometimes I wonder if Bryan Fischer isn't really just some brilliant left-wing satirist committed to making the AFA look as ridiculous as possible:  "We have feminized the Medal of Honor ... We now award it only for preventing casualties, not for inflicting them. So the question is this: when are we going to start awarding the Medal of Honor once again for soldiers who kill people and break things so our families can sleep safely at night?"

More Good News For Huckabee: James Robison Is Back In Business

For the last several months we've been noting the gradual re-emergence of James Robison, who was an influential leader back at the founding of the Religious Right but who eventually sort of fell off the radar. 

But in the last year or so, he has suddenly become more and more involved in Religious Right activism and I guess nothing better demonstrates that fact like this article, via AU, reporting that a few months back Robison convened a large gathering of leaders to plot how to defeat President Obama in 2012:

Conservative Christian leaders from across the nation met two months ago near the Dallas airport to strategize about replacing President Barack Obama with someone who matches their agenda – a move that paralleled an effort by Christian leaders in 1979 to defeat then President Jimmy Carter.

About 40 conservative Christian leaders gathered in Dallas on Sept. 8-9 to begin laying the groundwork for a religious-political movement similar to the one that helped Ronald Reagan oust the Baptist Sunday school teacher from the Oval Office. Convened by evangelist James Robison – a key figure in the religious effort 30 years ago to promote Reagan's candidacy – the list of attendees included many of the most prominent Christian evangelists and ministers, including several Southern Baptist leaders.

Southern Baptist leaders attending the meeting included: Richard Land (president of the SBC's Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission); Richard Lee (pastor and the editor of The American Patriot's Bible); John Meador (pastor of First Baptist Church of Euless, Texas); and Paige Patterson (president of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary).

Others at the meeting included: Tony Evans (a megachurch pastor in Texas); Father Joseph Fessio (founder and editor of Ignatius Press); Craig Groeschel (pastor of LifeChurch.tv); Miles McPherson (a megachurch pastor in California who spoke at the 2008 Republican National Convention); Johnnie Moore (a vice president at Liberty University who defended the school's decisions to have Glenn Beck and Newt Gingrich as recent speakers); Tom Mullins (a megachurch pastor in Florida); Doug Napier (legal counsel at the Alliance Defense Fund); Dino Rizzo (a megachurch pastor in Louisiana); Dave Roever (an evangelist who prayed at Glenn Beck's "Restoring Honor" rally); Mark Rutland (president of Oral Roberts University); David Stone (a megachurch pastor in Kentucky); and Stu Weber (a megachurch pastor in Oregon).

Several conservative Christian leaders highly active in politics attended the meeting, including: Stephen Broden (a pastor and Republican politician in Texas); Keith Butler (a pastor and Republican politician in Michigan); Maggie Gallagher (a conservative columnist who received tens of thousands of dollars for her work from the George W. Bush administration); Jim Garlow (chairman of Newt Gingrich's organization, Renewing American Leadership); Harry Jackson (pastor of Hope Christian Church in Washington, D.C.); Gene Mills (executive director of the Louisiana Family Forum); and Tony Perkins (president of the Family Research Council).

Some attendees have been guests on Glenn Beck's program on Fox News (including Broden, Garlow, Lee, McPherson, Mullins, Robison, Roever and Stone), and several were involved with his "Restoring Honor" rally (including Jackson, Land, Lee, Gallagher, Garlow and Roever).

Three of the attendees at the meeting have been under investigation since 2007 by Republican U.S. Sen. Chuck Grassley, a Baptist from Iowa, for perhaps violating IRS tax-exempt rules. Those at the meeting included televangelists Kenneth Copeland, Creflo Dollar and Joyce Meyer.

Other individuals helped plan the September meeting but were unable to attend. They included: Jerry Falwell Jr. (president of Liberty University); Jack Graham (a former president of the Southern Baptist Convention); O.S. Hawkins (head of the SBC's Guidestone Financial Resources); Jack Hayford (president of Foursquare International); and author Ravi Zacharias.

I should point out, also, that Robison's return can only be good news for Mike Huckabee, as Robison was his mentor back in the 1970s, leading Huckabee to drop out of seminary so he could go to work for Robison as his director of communications.

If Robison and crew are looking to replace Obama "with someone who matches their agenda," Huckabee seems like a perfect fit.

Good News For Huckabee: Vander Plaats Intends To Be Heavily Involved in 2012

Last week we noted that Mike Huckabee was going to be heading to Iowa to headline a fundraiser for the Iowa Family Policy Center, which is now being run by Bob Vander Plaats, and that Huckabee had stated quite clearly that he was attending the event in his capacity as a political leader.

So I am sure that it is purely coincidental that Vander Plaats has announced that the organizations he will be overseeing intend to be heavily involved in the state's 2012 Republican presidential caucuses:

Former Republican candidate for governor Bob Vander Plaats will lead a reorganized conservative policy and political advocacy group aimed in part at becoming an influential player in the campaign for Iowa’s 2012 Republican presidential caucuses.

Vander Plaats, who led a campaign to oust three Iowa Supreme Court justices in the Nov. 2 election, said Monday he will become president and chief executive officer of an umbrella group that includes the Iowa Family Policy Center, Marriage Matters and their political action committee.

Vander Plaats of Sioux City gives the new coalition of socially conservative groups a familiar face as it is plans a more influential role in the caucus campaign than four years ago, including offering its endorsement for the first time.

“We are going to be very engaged in the 2012 cycle. We believe it is our responsibility and our duty to be actively involved in taking a look at the candidates, vetting the candidates and then either recommending a candidate or candidates for consideration by the people who support us,” Vander Plaats told The Des Moines Register during an interview. The new group’s name, The Family Leader, is expected to be adopted today at the Iowa Family Policy Center’s board meeting.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/16/10

Newt Gingrich

Obama: Calls President’s policies “very dangerous” but believes “he loves this country” (CBN News, 11/15).

GOP: Says Republicans can “replace the left” with a ten-year plan (CBS News, 11/12).

Mike Huckabee

Congress: Like Romney, launches petition to support earmark ban (HuckPac, 11/15).

Defense: Open to cutting defense spending to reduce the deficit (Think Progress, 11/15).

Religious Right: Confusion over form of Huckabee’s speech to Iowa Family Policy Center (RWW, 11/11).

Sarah Palin

Reality TV: Premier of new show draws close to 5 million viewers (WSJ, 11/15).

Alaska: Lisa Murkowski criticizes Palin’s leadership capabilities (CBS News, 11/15).

Language: “Refudiate” declared the year’s best new word by the New Oxford American Dictionary (LA Times, 11/15).

Economy: Reuters analyst explores Palin’s “free-market populism” (Reuters, 11/12).

Book tour: Releases schedule for latest book tour with focus on “the heartland” (LA Times, 11/12).

Tim Pawlenty

Health Care: Files amicus brief to support lawsuit calling health care reform unconstitutional (Gov Monitor, 11/15).

Electability: Nate Silver dubs Pawlenty a “league-average politician” (NYT, 11/15).

New Hampshire: Writes anti-spending Op-Ed for state’s foremost conservative newspaper (Union Leader, 11/14).

Mitt Romney

Congress: Like Huckabee, launches petition to support earmark ban (The Hill, 11/15).

Fundraising: Has edge among early fundraisers (NYT, 11/12).

Tea Party: Tea Party Express leader says conservatives “not going to let go of the health care” law in Massachusetts (ABC News, 11/11).

Rick Santorum

2012: Building infrastructure in key states for 2012 run (Sunshine State News, 11/12).

Tea Party: Dubs himself the only authentic Tea Party presidential prospect (Politico, 11/10).

Huckabee Going To Iowa To Deliver Political Message Because He Hasn’t Been a Pastor for 20 Years

We noted the other day that Mike Huckabee was heading to Iowa to raise money for the Iowa Family Policy Center, which is now being overseen by Bob Vander Plaats who recently orchestrated the removal of three state Supreme Court justices in order to carry out "God's will."

In anticipation of Huckabee's visit, Pastor Dean Schmitt of Cedar Falls was featured in a video produced by IFPC explaining that Huckabee was "coming not as a politician but as a pastor" so he can "share his heart about the needs for the church to be energized and engaged in our culture":

But today Huck PAC Executive Director Hogan Gidley released a statement clarifying that Huckabee is not, in fact, attending as a pastor but is going there to deliver a political message:

“Governor Huckabee is excited about the opportunity to travel back to Iowa, see his friends and speak at the IFPC’s event. However, after seeing recent communications and comments made by the Iowa Family Policy Center and its representatives, Huck PAC would like to clarify the purpose of the message Governor Mike Huckabee will be delivering on November 21.

The Governor often speaks openly and unapologetically about his own personal Christian faith, but he doesn’t want there to be any confusion as to the nature of this invitation. The speaking request was made through Governor Huckabee’s Political Action Committee. The Governor was invited to speak about the political issues of the day and how they shape the culture of our country. His message will be political, but not partisan.

Governor Huckabee served honorably as Lieutenant Governor of Arkansas for three years, as Governor of Arkansas for ten and a half years and remains one of our nation’s strongest political leaders. While Governor Huckabee is grateful to have been an ordained minister – he hasn’t been a pastor of a church for about 20 years.”

Bob Vander Plaats Now Running The Religious Right Show In Iowa

Earlier this year, Bob Vander Plaats made an effort to secure the GOP nomination for Governor in Iowa and lost to Terry Branstad, prompting the right-wing state affiliate of Focus on the Family, the Iowa Family Policy Center, to announce that it was going to sit out the race.

Vander Plaats went on to head Iowa For Freedom and team up with national groups like the Family Research Council, National Organization for Marriage, and American Family Association, as well as the Iowa Family Policy Center, in carrying out "God's will" by removing three state Supreme Court justices over the marriage equality ruling.

Fresh off that victory, Vander Plaats has now been placed in control over IFPC and its affiliated Marriage Matters and is bringing in Mike Huckabee to help raise much needed funds:

Even before the votes were counted last Tuesday, Vander Plaats already had his next move mapped out. Last month, the Board of Directors of the Iowa Family Policy Center (IFPC) named Vander Plaats the CEO of an organization called The Family Group, which oversees IFPC and Marriage Matters. A source told TheIowaRepublican.com that Vander Plaats signed a three-year contract that will pay him around $120,000 annually.

...

Ironically, the organization that Vander Plaats is taking over doesn’t look anything like the one that aided him in the Republican gubernatorial primary. Mike Hartwig, who has headed up Marriage Matters since its creation was shown the door. Likewise, Tom Steen, who was appointed by the Board of IFPC to be the organization’s Chief Operating Officer in March of 2009, is gone. So too is IFPC’s communications director, Bryan English.

Vander Plaats is now charged with turning around the organization. His chief responsibility will be raising money for the organization. Not only will he have to raise the necessary funds to pay his $120,000 a year salary, but he is also going to have to raise the funds to pay the salaries of longtime IFPC President Chuck Hurley, Vander Plaats will also have to fund the two staff positions that he created following the departures of those listed above.

All of this may explain why Vander Plaats didn’t use Mike Huckabee’s celebrity to aide with Iowa for Freedom’s campaign. Instead, Huckabee will headline a fundraising event for IFPC on November 21st at First Federated Church in Des Moines. The funds raised at this event will go towards covering IFPC’s operating expenses.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 11/02/10

With the midterm elections taking place today, tomorrow is the unofficial beginning of the race for the 2012 GOP nomination.

Haley Barbour

Tea Party: Claims that Tea Party candidates will find a home in the GOP (AP, 11/2)

GOP: Says that Party will have to earn trust since voters are “not saying ‘Hey, we love you Republicans,’” (CBS, 11/1).

Newt Gingrich

2012: Tells WaPo that a 2012 bid is becoming “increasingly” practical (WaPo, 10/29).

Florida: Holds “Jobs Here Jobs Now” rally in Florida (Florida Times-Union, 10/29).

Mike Huckabee

Alaska: Making robo-calls on behalf of Joe Miller (AP, 11/1).

Iowa: Making robo-calls against the retention of three Iowa judges (Daily Caller, 10/29).

Mitt Romney

Health Care: Defends MA health care program, says national reform law is “unconstitutional” (GOP 12, 11/2).

Maine: Stumps for congressional candidate Dean Scontras, who is challenging Rep. Chellie Pingree (News 13, 11/1).

Iowa: Campaigns with GOP gubernatorial nominee Terry Branstad (Des Moines Register, 10/27).

Sarah Palin

2010: Find out how Palin-endorsed candidates perform on election day (WaPo, 11/2).

GOP: Says that the “good old boys club” is working against her (Politico, 11/2).

Colorado: Making robo-calls on behalf of Tom Tancredo (ABC, 11/1).

Media:  Floats Breitbart-linked conspiracy theory (Media Matters, 11/1).

West Virginia: Stumps with John Raese and praises “Mountain mamas” (LAT, 10/30).

Tim Pawlenty

Minnesota: Low favorability numbers may hurt GOP chances of retaining the governorship (City Pages, 11/1).

Palin: Defends Palin over Twitter over claims that she is unelectable (TPM, 11/1).

Mike Pence

GOP: Calls on his Party to focus on deficit reduction if in power (National Journal, 11/2).

2012: May leave GOP leadership to seek presidency or governorship (Indy Star, 10/31).

Right Wing Leftovers

  • After speaking at Liberty University, Newt Gingrich met with Jim Garlow, Tom Minnery, Craig Parshall, and others.
  • Mike Huckabee has apologized to Karl Rove.
  • Antonin Scalia has no use for those who "reject a priori, with no investigation, the possibility of miracles in general and of Jesus Christ’s resurrection in particular."
  • Is there anything more terrifying than a book entitled "Why Am I Conservative?" aimed at children that contains a foreward by Bryan Fischer?
  • Well, maybe the people who call into Fischer's radio program:

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 10/26/10

Newt Gingrich

2010: Campaigns with GOP gubernatorial candidate John Kasich in Ohio (Columbus Business First, 10/25).

Iowa: Holds “American Solutions” rally in Sioux City, Iowa (Sioux City Journal, 10/22).

Mike Huckabee

GOP: Defends Christine O’Donnell and hits “elitist” establishment (Raw Story, 10/25).

Religious Right: Sarah Posner looks into Huckabee’s ties to anti-gay groups (Religion Dispatches, 10/25).

Economy: Defends the “Fair Tax” on Fox News (Fox News, 10/25).

Sarah Palin

2010: Slams Lisa Murkowski, lauds Joe Miller, in facebook post (Facebook, 10/25).

Arizona: Sheriff Joe Arpaio presents her “pink underwear” as gift (Washington Independent, 10/25).

2012: New York Magazine says that Palin is gearing up presidential campaign (New York Magazine, 10/24).

Tim Pawlenty

Iowa: Has donated over $114,000 to Iowa Republican candidates (Des Moines Register, 10/26).

2010: Stumps for gubernatorial candidates in eight states before election (CNN, 10/25).

2012: Trails Obama in Minnesota in hypothetical race (GOP12, 10/25).

Mitt Romney

Tea Party: Hopes to pursue economic message with Tea Party activists (WSJ, 10/25).

Fundraising: Mega-donors line up behind Romney (Politico, 10/23).

Rick Santorum

Iowa: Campaigns for a GOP majority in the Iowa State House (KTIV, 10/25).

Religious Right: Speaks to Tennessee Right to Life Convention (Knoxville News, 10/21).

Judges: Joins bus tour with NOM, FRC, others to oppose retention for judges who backed same-sex marriage (On Top, 10/21).

The Company Huckabee Keeps

Earlier today I noted that Mike Huckabee seemingly has no problem associating himself with fringe right-wing and Religious Right activists, regardless of how radical they may be.

Now Sarah Posner brings to our attention another connection that I had not realized: Gary Glenn, president of the American Family Association of Michigan.

As Sam Stein reports, Glenn is targeting Democratic state House candidate Toni Sessoms with robocalls that use the word "homosexual" ten times:

Liberal Democratic lawyer and openly homosexual statehouse candidate Toni Sessoms, doesn't share our values. Michiganliberal.com boasts that Sessoms is 'independently wealthy, and if elected would become the first openly lesbian state representative.' Sessoms is endorsed by the homosexual newspaper in Detroit, by Detroit's homosexual equality Michigan PAC and by the Michigan Democratic Party homosexual and transgender caucus. Sessom's campaign manager is the openly homosexual Central Michigan University faculty member who lost the statehouse race two years ago. Her deputy campaign manager was co-president of CMU's homosexual student group -- an openly homosexual candidate with a campaign run by homosexual activists. But, of course, in a district where voters strongly supported the marriage protection amendment none of this is disclosed on Toni Sessom's campaign material. With homosexual activists in the Michigan Democratic Party pushing to repeal our marriage amendment, our families deserve a state representative we can trust shares our values. Not a candidate with a hidden agenda, homosexual activist agenda, not Toni Sessoms.

Poser notes that Huckabee and Glenn have a long history and points to this video in which Huckabee positvely gushes about the work being done by Glenn and the AFA Michigan:

The following year, Huckabee provided a videotaped speech to Glenn's group's annual fundraiser, in which he called Glenn "a very special friend. . . one of the stalwart, key people who absolutely has not flinched or wavered in his commitment to pro-life and pro-family values." He continued, "If we had leaders like Gary Glenn across America, our work wouldn't be so hard. . . . [they] have been committed to maintaining a solid course for truth."

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Mike Huckabee Posts Archive

Kyle Mantyla, Tuesday 11/18/2014, 6:30pm
Todd Starnes is smart: "If the folks coming across the border were evangelical Christians hoping to home school their kids, Obama would call up the Marines." Lou Engle acolyte and Bound4LIFE founder Brian Kim recounts the day his liberal professor "confirmed a vision from God" for him. Look who is palling around Europe with Mike Huckabee. Glenn Beck seems pretty sure that President Obama is trying to foment a race war by announcing action on deportations at the same time as Missouri braces for an announcement regarding the possible indictment of Officer... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Monday 11/17/2014, 12:05pm
Mike Huckabee is currently leading dozens of conservative pastors through the U.S. and Europe on a junket he’s calling “Mike Huckabee’s Reagan, Thatcher, Pope John Paul II Tour.” On Friday, the group stopped at Auschwitz and Birkenau, where a speaker inevitably compared today’s America to Nazi Germany. Huckabee, who has repeatedly warned that the U.S. is transforming into Nazi Germany, invited Kitty Werthmann of Eagle Forum to discuss her experience living in Austria during the Nazi takeover. Werthmann frequently travels the country speaking about what she sees... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Wednesday 10/29/2014, 12:30pm
As of today, there is only one person undergoing treatment for Ebola in the United States, and only two people have contracted the disease in the U.S., both of whom are healthcare workers who survived. But the U.S.’s success in fighting the disease at home has not stopped Republican politicians and their allies in the conservative media from turning it into a political issue, warning of an impending massive Ebola outbreak in the U.S. and declaring that when that happens it will be all President Obama’s fault. Here are five of the most common conspiracy theories that conservative... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 10/20/2014, 5:33pm
Kyler Geoffroy @ Towleroad: Mike Huckabee Wants to Send Houston Mayor 'Thousands' of Bibles to Stop Her 'Political Genocide' Against Christians. David Edwards @ Raw Story: Fox News priest: How can we baptize kids in same-sex families if parents are sinners? Ahiza Garcia @ TPM: GOPer: Gay Couples Are 'Gremlins' That Will Destroy Our Way Of Life. Steve Benen @ The Maddow Blog: Texas’ Abbott balks at question on interracial marriage. Tina Nguyen @ Mediaite: Sarah Palin Reportedly Donates Only 5.5% of PAC Money to Actual Candidates. MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Friday 10/17/2014, 5:31pm
Mike Huckabee will be taking eighteen pastors from Iowa on an all-expenses paid "Reagan, Thatcher, Pope John Paul II Tour" through Europe and Religious Right organizer/Christian nationalist David Lane will be footing the bill. The Blaze's Dana Loesch is freaking out over Ebola: "Stop it! People, stop trying to prove to everyone that there is no reason to panic. There IS a reason to panic!" Billy Graham says that "America is just as wicked as Sodom and Gomorrah ever were, and as deserving of the judgment of God." Bryan Fischer addressed our post... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Friday 10/10/2014, 3:11pm
Earlier this week, Mike Huckabee ripped into the Republican Party for what he feels is its insufficient willingness to take a public stand against gay marriage, declaring that he is "utterly exasperated" with the GOP and its leadership on the issue. He threatened to leave the party and take a bunch of "God-fearing, Bible-believing people" with him unless the party speaks out more forcefully against gay rights. Predictably, the National Organization for Marriage hailed Huckabee as a hero today, praising him for "speaking for millions of Americans who are sick of... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Friday 10/10/2014, 12:55pm
Responding today to Mike Huckabee’s threat to leave the GOP over Republican leaders’ muted response to gay marriage victories, Rep. Rob DeSantis reassured the former governor that the Republican Party is not giving up on its fight against gay rights. The freshman Republican from Florida told Newsmax TV that Huckabee and other Religious Right leaders shouldn’t even think about leaving the GOP. “Being in Congress and seeing the left wing of the Democratic Party and the elite media in action, they are hostile to conservative cultural values across the board, they are... MORE >
Miranda Blue, Wednesday 10/08/2014, 9:49am
In an interview with Iowa-based conservative talk show host Steve Deace on Monday, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee repeated his recommendation that governors simply ignore the Supreme Court’s decision to let stand lower court rulings legalizing marriage equality in several new states, adding that state governments should have also ignored Roe v. Wade and the Supreme Court rulings banning school-sponsored prayer. When Deace pressed him on the “maelstrom” that would be set off if state governments simply ignored court rulings on marriage, Huckabee responded that it was in... MORE >