Why Mike Huckabee scares me; Why I’d like to go get a beer with Mike Huckabee

Of the Republican Presidential hopefuls with any reasonable chance of the nomination (Giuliani, Romney, Thompson, McCain, Huckabee, and what the hell let’s say Ron Paul too), the one I think would be hardest for any Democratic nominee to beat is Mike Huckabee. Yes, the other man from Hope, Governor of Arkansas, Baptist minister, and former fat man.

Why is this? Primarily, it’s because he is just a likable guy. Down-home Southern likability was a big part of how the media played up Bush in 2000. Huckabee tells jokes, he plays bass, and he even played ping-pong with the folks at NPR! He also refuses to engage in fear-mongering on foreign policy or play the 9/11 card ad nauseum. He may not believe in evolution, and may be an extreme social conservative, but he’s an economic populist much in the same way as John Edwards. He might lose the vote of the most libertarian or free-market Republicans who call him a “nanny-stater” (he advocates a nationwide smoking ban, and talks up the obesity epidemic often), but he would keep the Christian evangelical vote to a far, far greater degree than any other Republican front runner.

So basically, Huckabee keeps the entire social conservative/values voter base, steals the Democrat’s thunder on economic populism, and wins over any independents or undecideds who pay more attention to personality than anything else. He is by far the hardest opponent for the Democratic attack. It’s just hard to get someone to dislike Mike Huckabee! I disagree with him on almost everything and yet I’d still like to go get a beer with him! Too bad he doesn’t drink.

Second toughest opponent would be Romney, because he would keep at least some of the Christian evangelical vote on board, firmly keep the free-market wing of his party, probably win over the more business-minded of the independents and maybe even the Democrats, and have the press go all ga-ga over his dashing good looks and creepy tan.

This, of course, is all in contrast to Rudy Giuliani, who would lose almost all of the Christian evangelical and values vote, possibly to a third party candidate, doesn’t seem even remotely likable to anyone, and basically scares the shit out of everybody to the left of Condoleezza Rice.

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~ by danopticon on November 1, 2007.

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