I Will Not Vote for Mike Huckabee for President
I have a feeling that this post may be controversial. So I will begin by saying that it solely reflects the opinion of The Kosher Hedgehog. Whether Lowell the Hedgehog concurs or disagrees he will have to say, perhaps in a comment or supplement to this post.
Mike Huckabee may be a heck of a nice guy. I might well enjoy having him as a friend. If I lived in Arkansas, I might even vote for him for re-election as Governor. However, I would never vote for him for the office of the Presidency of the United States. Indeed, in an election between him and Hillary Clinton, I would have to vote for Senator Clinton, despite all the dire consequences her election might entail. If the choice is between Huckabee and either Barack Obama or John Edwards, I would pray that Rudy Guiliani or John McCain or some decent alternative candidate for whom I could conscientiously vote runs as an independent.
I believe that a lot of voters will agree with me. Hugh Hewitt has suggested that if Mike Huckabee is the GOP nominee, the Democrats will win 44 states. That may be an overly optimistic assessment of Huckabee's chances in the general election, at least if Hillary Clinton is the Democratic nominee. However, Huckabee's non-electability is not the primary issue for me. I would be more concerned if he won.
Since Mike Huckabee first surged in the polls in Iowa, his record as Governor of Arkansas, policy positions and public statements have received closer scrutiny. The more that I have learned about him, the more convinced I have become that he is not prepared to assume the responsibilities of the office of President of the United States.
National security is the overarching issue for me in the 2008 Presidential election. On that issue, I would prefer Mitt Romney (my clear first choice), Rudy Guiliani or John McCain to any of the Democratic candidates. I canot say the same for Mike Huckabee, if he were running against Senator Clinton.
While I have no respect for Clintonism, and know well that left-wing policies and higher taxes would be the inevitable consequences of the election of Hillary Clinton as President, especially if the Democrats retain control of both houses of Congress, I am confident that a Hillary Clinton Administration would adequately defend our nation against external threats and at least would govern responsibly at home. The two-term record of President Bill Clinton gives me that confidence.
Regarding national security, although Bill and Hillary would probably deny it under oath, I fully believe had either of them been President on 9/11/2001, the U.S. would have invaded Afghanistan and at least strongly confronted the Saddam Hussein regime to stop the Iraqi WMD development program that everyone then believed existed. Prior to the George W. Bush Presidency, the Clintons were quite close in political outlook on both domestic matters and foreign affairs to British Prime Minister Tony Blair. It is likely that under a Hillary Clinton Presidency a U.S.-British coalition would have emerged against Saddam Hussein very similar to what actually occurred.
Mike Huckabee is not alone on my list of unacceptable GOP candidates. Tom Tancredo and Ron Paul are on it as well. With wonderful choices for the GOP such as Romney, Giuliani and McCain, I deeply hope that my dilemma will remain purely theoretical.
Update, 7:00 p.m., 12/18/2007:
If you listened to Hugh Hewitt's radio program today, you heard Hugh up his estimate of the number of States that Mike Huckabee would lose in the general election, as the GOP Presidential nominee, to 50. Hugh then got carried away and said that he might even lose 55 or 60 States, but I suspect that at that point he was speaking tongue in cheek.
Hugh also finally took note on the air of my photo comparison of Mike Huckabee and President Charles Logan on "24." [See "The Next President of the United States--Huck Norris," Hedgehog Blog, November 30, 2007.]
Hugh's biggest fear is that in the event the Democrats win the White House in 2008, that Democratic President may have the opportunity to appoint as many as 5 left-wing Justices to the Supreme Court of the United States. He therefore justifiably worries about the electoral prospects of Governor Huckabee. Interestingly enough, for all of his reservations, he pledged to back Mike Huckabee in the general election if he receives the GOP nomination, vowing to "go Thelma and Louise with the rest of the GOP, pedal to the metal, right off the cliff."
I won't be along for the ride, however. For my part, despite Hugh's absolutely legitimate concern over the fate of the Supreme Court, my own concern over Mike Huckabee's ability to handle a national security crisis is so strong that I would vote for Senator Clinton over Governor Huckabee.