Huckabee under Fire before Ames Straw Poll
With the upcoming straw poll in Ames, Iowa a make-or-break moment for second-tier GOP presidential candidates – and for Mitt Romney, the only major candidate not to skip the event – tensions at the bottom are flaring up. The Club for Growth -- a group known for translating its strict economic conservatism into large cash expenditures in Republican primaries to weed out so-called “Republicans in Name Only” – has made its first TV ad of the 2008 campaign, spending $85,000 in the Des Moines/Ames market to accuse former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee of “a willingness to slap a tax increase on everything from groceries to nursing home beds.”
But that’s not Huckabee’s only problem. While Mitt Romney’s campaign has had to deal with anti-Mormon sentiment among some conservative Christians, which many see as parallel to John F. Kennedy facing anti-Catholicism in 1960, one Huckabee supporter decided to turn back the clock, targeting Catholic Sen. Sam Brownback. One Rev. Tim Rude, in an e-mail sent to Iowa Evangelicals, noted that Huckabee, unlike Brownback, is “one of us”:
Huckabee is an evangelical. He has not learned how to speak to evangelicals; i.e. Bush 41 & 43. He is one of us. I know Senator Brownback converted to Roman Catholicism in 2002. Frankly, as a recovering Catholic myself, that is all I need to know about his discernment when compared to the Governor’s. I don’t if this fact is widely known among evangelicals who are supporting Brownback.
Huckabee, a former Baptist preacher, has made much of his pious past. He’s called on religious-right activists choosing candidates “to be Christian leaders, not Republican leaders,” and of the potential nomination of Rudy Giuliani, he said back in April,
I am Christian first; I am a Republican second. And so, my convictions are what led me to the Republican Party. And I am not saying that I would never vote for a person who is different from me, because obviously I have to vote for a lot of people who are different than me and have different views. But my value system is the one thing I have to hold on to. A hundred years from now, which party is in power is not going to make a whole lot of difference, but whether I was true to my moral compass means everything.
Huckabee disavowed Rude’s comments – which was good enough for the Catholic League. But given the stakes for the two long-shot candidates, both competing for the all-important narrow slice of the electorate – conservative Christian Republicans in Iowa – neither is looking to back down. Brownback’s campaign called his apology “tepid,” and Huckabee’s campaign fired back hard – telling Brownback to “stop whining and start showing some of the Christian character he seems to always find lacking in others.”
Share this post
Within 24 Hours, Glenn Beck Will Break News That Will Rock the Nation and Take Down The Entire Power Structure (UPDATED)
6/12/13 @ 2:03pm
What Happened to Glenn Beck's Scoop That Was Going to Rock the Nation?
6/13/13 @ 1:42pm
Swanson: Star Trek Promotes Bestiality, Children's Show Superhero 'Probably Fighting Christians'
6/7/13 @ 3:15pm
One Million Moms Protests 'The Fosters' For Trying to 'Desensitize America and Our Children by Promoting Inappropriate Behavior'
6/7/13 @ 12:30pm
Citing the Book of Mormon, Glenn Beck Warns That 'We Are at the End'
6/14/13 @ 4:41pm