Huckabee, Media’s Nice Guy, Was the First Republican to Smear Gays in ’08 Debate

New York Times columnist Gail Collins perfectly captures the conventional wisdom about Mike Huckabee in today’s edition:

Why would the family values crowd prefer a batshit crazy adulterating New Yorker, a Hollywood actor/abortion lobbyist or a Mormon to one of their own?

Like Bill Clinton, Huckabee was born in a town called Hope and became a pretty good governor of a state that doesn’t make it all that easy. (Plus, you have to love the fact that he lived for a while in a mobile home on the Arkansas Statehouse grounds.) He’s extremely inclusive, defending minorities who are illegal immigrants as well as the ones registered to vote.

Inclusive? Preacher Huckabee was the first and only ’08 candidate (so far) to slur a gay person, who also happens to be a member of Congress:

“Let’s face it,” he recently told a crowd of Christian conservatives in Iowa… “In our lifetimes, we’ve seen our country go from ‘Leave It to Beaver’ to ‘Beavis and Butt-head,’ from Barney Fife to Barney Frank, from ‘Father Knows Best’ to television shows where father knows nothing.”

Collins continues:

On the downside, I think he’d be a terrible president. He doesn’t know beans about foreign affairs, he wants to replace the income tax with a national sales tax, and his positions on social issues are far to the right of the general populace. But why aren’t the social conservatives rallying around this guy? Unlike any of the major candidates, he’s still on his first wife and first position on abortion.

Why would the family values crowd prefer a batshit crazy adulterating New Yorker, a Hollywood actor/abortion lobbyist or a Mormon to one of their own?

Because the Cheney-Bush crowd has spent the last six years scaring the bejesus out of them. These feeble-minded souls are convinced that Osama has an army of suiciders on its way to blow up every Walmart store in America. They want someone who will protect them.

Perhaps types Establishment (or maybe non-Southerners) can’t see Huckabee as his own peeps do. They sense weakness, or at least a decided lack of toughness. (His signature accomplishment is losing 110 pounds.)

Huckabee’s jab at Barney Frank, which was briefly a soundbite from a debate in March, was a pathetic attempt to pander to the haters. It didn’t work because it was way too mild.

If he can’t smear a queer better than that, how can he protect me Osama bin Laden?


  • Dee Loralei
    October 25, 2007 - 7:10 pm | Permalink

    Don’t forget Huckabee also pardoned child rapist Wayne Dummond, who went on to rape and murder at least 1 other woman.

  • October 25, 2007 - 9:14 pm | Permalink

    The single greatest aspect of Mike Huckabee’s campaign – like Mike Gravel’s ( ) – is that he backs scrapping the income tax, and replacing it with a progressive national sales tax (a/k/a “FairTax” HR 25).

    If one can cut Huck slack for being consistent with his religious dogma, we’ll all come out much better under FairTax ( ).

    Prices AFTER FairTax would look SIMILAR to prices BEFORE FairTax – NOT 30% HIGHER – as opponents contend; competition would see to it. The FairTax rate on new items would be 29.9% (on the new, reduced cost of items because business isn’t taxed under FairTax – thus lowering retail prices by 20% to 30%), or 23% of the “tax inclusive” price tag – this is the way INCOME TAX is figured (parts of the total dollar).

    The effective tax rate percentages, that different income groups would pay under a FairTax consumption tax, are calculated by crediting the monthly “prebate” (rebate of tax on necessities) against all likely monthly spending of citizen families (1 member, and greater based on figures established by the Dept. of HHS – a single person receiving ~$200/mo. A family of four receiving ~$500, in addition to family earners receiving their WHOLE paycheck). Prof.’s Kotlikoff and Rapson (10/06) have concluded,

    (From study: ) “…the FairTax imposes much lower average taxes on working-age households than does the current system. The FairTax broadens the tax base from what is now primarily a system of labor income taxation to a system that taxes, albeit indirectly, both labor income and existing wealth. By including existing wealth in the effective tax base, much of which is owned by rich and middle-class elderly households, the FairTax is able to tax labor income at a lower effective rate and, thereby, lower the average lifetime tax rates facing working-age Americans.

    “Consider, as an example, a single household age 30 earning $50,000. The household’s average tax rate under the current system is 21.1 percent. It’s 13.5 percent under the FairTax. Since the FairTax would preserve the purchasing power of Social Security benefits and also provide a tax rebate, older low-income workers who will live primarily or exclusively on Social Security would be better off. As an example, the average remaining lifetime tax rate for an age 60 married couple with $20,000 of earnings falls from its current value of 7.2 percent to -11.0 percent under the FairTax. As another example, compare the current 24.0 percent remaining lifetime average tax rate of a married age 45 couple with $100,000 in earnings to the 14.7 percent rate that arises under the FairTax.”


    (From study: ) “…once one moves to generations postdating the baby boomers there are positive welfare gains for all income groups in each cohort. Under a 23 percent FairTax policy, the poorest members of the generation born in 1990 enjoy a 13.5 percent welfare gain. Their middle-class and rich contemporaries experience 5 and 2 percent welfare gains, respectively. The welfare gains are largest for future generations. Take the cohort born in 2030. The poorest members of this cohort enjoy a huge 26 percent improvement in their well-being. For middle class members of this birth group, there’s a 12 percent welfare gain. And for the richest members of the group, the gain is 5 percent.”

    Methinks it’s well past time to scrap the tax code ( ) and pay for government the way that America’s working men and women are paid – when something is sold.

  • GarryInNola
    October 26, 2007 - 8:32 am | Permalink

    As Adolf Hitler learned in the 1930s & 1940s you must have an “enemy from without and an enemy from within” in order to regiment the people and get them to willingly give up their civil liberties. The enemy from without is, of course, “The Terrorists” and the enemy from within is “The Gays”.

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