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Huckabee’s a Divider, Not a Uniter

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Jake Files was a newly elected representative when all two dozen Arkansas House Republicans met for their first caucus in 1999. They had doubled their numbers in elections two months earlier, and were ready to join Republican Gov. Mike Huckabee in pushing for conservative government.

That was when Brenda Turner, the governor’s chief of staff, entered.

“Just walked in, shut the door and said, ‘There’s two kinds of people in the world: those who are for Mike Huckabee and those who are against Mike Huckabee. I’ll do everything I can to help the first group. I’ll do everything I can to hurt the second,’ ” said Mr. Files, who left the legislature after two terms.

And that’s the way it was.

“Not only would he not help you, he would go out of his way to do things in opposition to you,” Mr. Files said.

I wonder if, while he was sabotaging fellow Republicans in Arkansas, Huckabee was wearing a WWJD bracelet.

Arkansas Republicans are speaking out because they fear Huckabee may do to the national party what he did to the GOP in Arkansas.

“He destroyed it[the state GOP],” said Randy Minton, a former state representative whom Mr. Huckabee worked to help get elected but who later clashed repeatedly with the governor. “We had one U.S. senator, we had two congressmen, at the tops we had 37 out of 135 legislators in the House and Senate. Now I think there’s 32 in the legislature, we have no U.S. senators and we have one congressman.”

According to the story, Huckabee was quick to turn on anyone who didn’t agree with him. And there seem to be some unsettling similarities between him and another well-known Republican Chief Executive:

Like Mr. Bush, Mr. Huckabee achieved some early successes. By the beginning of 1999, when he was sworn in for his first full term, his party had gained nearly a quarter of the state’s House, added state Senate seats and held the lieutenant governorship, one of the two U.S. Senate seats and half of the four congressional seats.

But also like Mr. Bush, who battled congressional Republicans on immigration reform and prescription drug coverage, Mr. Huckabee found himself fighting members of his own party.

From the perspective of the right, things got off to a troubling start in the Huckabee administration when the supposed fiscal conservative made a mad dash to soak Arkansans with more taxes:

Almost immediately after taking office from Gov. Jim Guy Tucker, a Democrat who resigned after federal fraud and corruption convictions, Mr. Huckabee campaigned for his first tax increase — one-eighth cent on the sales tax to dedicate to conservation projects. He followed up with both budget cuts and increases, but the net effect was nearly $500 million in new taxes and an accompanying rise in spending.

Huckabee also showed his true colors by running to the left on immigration.

Republicans and conservative Democrats wanted a crackdown on illegal aliens, but Mr. Huckabee resisted.

Isn’t this the same Huckabee who now tells us he is going to be tough on immigration?

The intra-party sqabbles intensified, and the Southern Baptist preacher resorted to “calling his Republican opponents the “Shi’ites”.” Nice, Reverend.

Arkansas Republicans point to a possible key reason for the feud - Huckabee was in it for himself, not the party.

Arkansas Republicans, though, said Mr. Huckabee was building an organization for himself, not a farm team for the party. He left many appointments of former Govs. Bill Clinton and Jim Guy Tucker in office, including some department heads who stayed through Mr. Huckabee’s tenure.

They said no Republicans hold any of the statewide constitutional offices, and the state party chairman told the Associated Press last week that he doesn’t expect to field a candidate this year to run against Sen. Mark Pryor, a Democrat.

“In the 10 years where the governor was the title head of the party, we actually took steps backwards,” Mr. Files said, noting that Republicans were advancing in other Southern states. “The overall morale of the party did not take any of those same stages it did in the other states. It started plateauing and took a dive.”

Well, embracing appointees of such ethical luminaries as Clinton and the felon Tucker didn’t help.

Is this just sour grapes from some Arkansas Republicans? Maybe not. The Washington Times’ analysis showed some support for the critics of Huckabee.

The campaign finance records for Conservative Leadership for Arkansas PAC, Mr. Huckabee’s political action committee, also seem to bear out the charge that he was building his own organization.

Records kept with the secretary of state in Little Rock show that CLAPAC spent only a third of its money on candidates between 2001 and 2006, with the rest going to consulting, accounting and, in later years, travel and fundraising for Mr. Huckabee.

Mr. Huckabee gave contributions as well during those years to at least three Democrats. Given that $5,000 of CLAPAC’s money came in a 2003 donation from the state Republican Party, that means some Republican money was used indirectly to aid the party’s own opponents.

How’s that for a loyal Republican? Using a “conservative” PAC to raise money, and then helping to fund Democrats!

Is there any wonder why real Republicans in Arkansas were steamed?

“Go out and ask those ladies at bake sales or out raising money if they thought that money would end up in the hands of Democratic candidates,” Mr. Hendren said. “That’s what drove us up a wall.”

Oh, it gets worse. Huckabee actually helped put a Democrat in office:

One Democrat who received CLAPAC money was Barbara Horn. Mr. Huckabee supported her even though a Republican planned to run for the same seat in 2000. The Associated Press reported that Mr. Huckabee’s support for the Democrat chased the Republican from the race, delivering an open seat to the Democratic Party.

The Times found that CLAPAC’s records for 2000 were missing from the Secretary of State’s office (hmm, records sure do go missing a lot in Arkansas), and Huckabee’s campaign did not respond to requests that he release PAC records.

Meanwhile, Huckabee seems to be quite adept and manipulating PACs for his purposes. In 2205, he founded a new PAC in Virginia, “which has less stringent limits on campaign activity.” (Go figure.) Its stated purpose is to aid state and local candidates. But guess who’s getting all the money instead:

[R]ecords show it hasn’t donated to a single candidate but instead has paid for Mr. Huckabee’s consultants, travel and fundraising.

And, in all of this, we haven’t even discussed his ethics problems, his support for the release of dangerous violent criminals, and his Dem-speak on military matters.

Mike Huckabee is now taking positions opposite to those he took while as Governor of Arkansas. But if actions speak louder than words, if we truly know people by their fruit, it is clear that Mike Huckabee is no conservative. In fact, if you listen to a lot of politicians in Arkansas, he’s not even much of a Republican.


Peace to All creatures great and small............................................

But when we turn to the Hebrew literature, we do not find such jokes about the donkey. Rather the animal is known for its strength and its loyalty to its master (Genesis 49:14; Numbers 22:30).

Peppi_drinking_beer.jpg

my burro, bosco ..enjoying a beer in almaty

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He wants to unite everybody but homosexuals. The gays get to unite with pedophiles, sadomasochists, and necrophiles.


All you need is a modest house in a modest neighborhood

In a modest town where honest people dwell

--July 22---------Sent I-129F packet

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