Read Paul's bio and previous columns


January 21, 2008

Saving Christianity from Mike Huckabee


A few weeks ago, a student asked Mike Huckabee: “Recent polls show you surging . . . What do you attribute this surge to?”


Without even needing to stop and think of an answer, Huckabee responded: “There's only one explanation for it, and it's not a human one. It's the same power that helped a little boy with two fish and five loaves feed a crowd of 5,000 people . . . And it defies all explanation, it has confounded the pundits. And I'm enjoying every minute of them trying to figure it out, and until they look at it, from a, just experience beyond human, they'll never figure it out . . . That's honestly why it's happening.”


So, not only has Huckabee claimed to be the carrier of God’s banner on Earth, but also that God has officially endorsed him. Word also has it that Saint Peter has momentarily stepped away from Heaven’s gates to put up “Vote Huckabee” signs in Heaven’s front yard.


Wow, Mike. So is Jesus multiplying your push-polls too?


The last few weeks of the Republican primary campaign have seen at least a million mysterious, pro-Huckabee push-poll calls made to the homes of voters in states with approaching election days, such as South Carolina. Push-polling is an effort involving calling voters under the guise of conducting a poll to measure support for the various candidates. But when a voter identifies his candidate of choice, the automated caller will systematically seek to discredit that candidate with half-truths and distortions, while enhancing the record of another candidate (the one supported by whoever is sponsoring the push-polling).


The Huckabee campaign, of course, has denied involvement in the apparently multi-state effort to promote his candidacy in the nastiest way possible. But the campaign has stopped short of taking effective steps to stop the often illegal efforts.


So, I, a deeply religious Christian who is disturbed by both Huckabee’s alarming claim to the Christian banner and the push-polling sponsored by his backers, decided to design a fact-based, truthful push-polling script targeted at Christian voters supporting Huckabee:


Automated Caller: Hello, we are conducting a poll to measure the support for the Republican presidential candidates. Who do you intend to vote for?


Christian Voter: Mike Huckabee.


Automated Caller: Do you believe that a Christian candidate should be honest, trustworthy and sincere in order to get your vote?


Christian Voter: Yes.


Automated Caller: Did you know . . .


That Mike Huckabee claims to be the first ever governor of Arkansas to cut taxes, and to have done so 94 times, even though according to his definition of “tax cut,” every Arkansas governor in the past 60 years has cut taxes?


That Mike Huckabee insists that he reduced taxes as governor of Arkansas, even though the average Arkansan’s tax burden grew from $1,969 to $2,902, or 47 percent, during his administration?


That Mike Huckabee’s website says “I . . . flatly reject the notion of a ‘living Constitution,’” and that only last week, he said that the Constitution is a “living, breathing document?”


That Mike Huckabee claims credit for balanced budgets in Arkansas, even though there is an Arkansas law that requires every governor to deliver a balanced budget?


That Mike Huckabee has repeatedly said that 80 percent of Arkansans voted for his higher gas taxes, even though he signed the gas tax increase before the referendum on highway repairs he refers to?


That Mike Huckabee maintains his opposition to amnesty, sanctuaries and jobs for illegal immigrants, even though he continues to defend his decision to give illegals the same in-state tuition that is denied to Americans from 49 states?


That Mike Huckabee claims to have supported the troop surge early on, even though in late January 2007 he was still being quoted as not being in support of it?


That Mike Huckabee’s ads say that he brought crime down in Arkansas, even though violent crime was higher at the end of his tenure than it was when he took office?


That Mike Huckabee says he is “staunchly” opposed to taxing the Internet, even though he has tried to prevent Congress from making the Internet tax moratorium permanent?


That despite pulling a campaign ad at the last minute because it supposedly portrayed one of his opponents negatively, Mike Huckabee nevertheless showed the ad to the media, which transmitted the ad’s content to voters for free?


That as the Florida primary approaches, Mike Huckabee now vows to keep Cuba isolated, despite having advocated the lifting of trade sanctions on Cuba not too long ago as governor of Arkansas?


That despite his words in support of faith and strong families, Mike Huckabee opposes school choice, which would allow families to spend their money on tuition at parochial schools, favoring instead the forcing of families to pay tuition for public schools through taxes?


Did you know that if, theoretically, a columnist was trying to list Mike Huckabee’s distortions, half-truths, and quarter-truths, he would at some point reach a word limit that would let Mike Huckabee off the hook in so many ways that it just might make you cry?


And if you did not know any of these facts, would you, or God, still consider Mike Huckabee honest, trustworthy and sincere?


© 2008 North Star Writers Group. May not be republished without permission.


Click here to talk to our writers and editors about this column and others in our discussion forum.


To e-mail feedback about this column, click here. If you enjoy this writer's work, please contact your local newspapers editors and ask them to carry it.

This is Column # PI088. Request permission to publish here.
Op-Ed Writers
Eric Baerren
Lucia de Vernai
Herman Cain
Dan Calabrese
Alan Hurwitz
Paul Ibrahim
David Karki
Llewellyn King
Gregory D. Lee
David B. Livingstone
Nathaniel Shockey
Stephen Silver
Candace Talmadge
Jamie Weinstein
Feature Writers
Mike Ball
Bob Batz
The Laughing Chef
David J. Pollay
Business Writers
Cindy Droog
D.F. Krause