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“The Devil In Mike Huckabee”: Mr. Huckabee Far Overshadows His Kinder Gentler Gov. Huckabee

So Mike Huckabee is ending his weekly Saturday night show on Fox News as he thinks about a run for president in 2016.  Tragically, his Fox News audience will be stuck having to find other shows to enjoy, like reruns of Walker, Texas Ranger or the torture scenes from Zero Dark Thirty.

While Huckabee is thinking about his run for president, I thought it was time to think about Huckabee. And I’m talking both of them.  What do I mean? Well, there’s “Governor Huckabee,” a genial, compassionate person.  And then there’s “Mr. Huckabee,” his callous, rightwing alter ego.

First, however, I want to address those who are simply dismissing Huckabee as having zero chance of securing the GOP nomination in 2016.  They are wrong.

Sure, recent polls have Jeb Bush leading the GOP field. But Bush is as exciting to many conservatives as Hillary Clinton is to many progressives, meaning not so much. They are both viewed in essence like eating Brussels sprouts. Sure, you knew it’s good for you, but it’s not exciting.

But Huckabee (akin to Elizabeth Warren on the left) is like an ice cream sundae.  They excite people, and primaries tend to be dominated by voters who are the most excited.

And keep in mind that when Huckabee ran for president in 2008, he won the Iowa caucuses.  He also did well in other early primaries such as in Missouri, which he lost by 1 percent to the Brussels sprout of that field, John McCain.

Plus the GOP electorate has become more conservative since 2008.  In 2012, 50 percent of those who voted in the first batch of GOP presidential contests were Evangelical Christians, up from 44 percent in 2008.This bodes well for Huckabee in early primary states like Missouri, Colorado, and Minnesota, where the like-minded Rick Santorum won in 2012.

Bottom line: Huckabee is for real.  At least from an electoral point of view. But who is the real Huckabee is another question.

There’s the kindly Governor Huckabee who championed an increase in the minimum wage, hired more state employees and even expanded government services with programs such as “ARKids First” that provided health coverage for thousands of Arkansas’ children.

Now let’s meet “Mr. Huckabee,” whose views on a range of issues are truly frightening – I’m talking hide the children and grab a pitchfork scary.  Here’s a sample:

1. Huckabee wants Christian sharia law: Huckabee stated during his 2007 presidential campaign that we can’t change the Bible to line up with society’s “contemporary view,” instead we “should amend the Constitution so it’s in God’s standards.” Do you think he really wants to stone to death woman who aren’t a virgin on their wedding night like it mandates in the Bible?

2.  Gays are a health hazard: Huckabee stated that “homosexuality is an aberrant, unnatural, and sinful lifestyle, and we now know it can pose a dangerous public health risk.”

3. The Sandy Hook shooting is our fault: Huckabee blamed the horrific killing of 26 people, including 20 children, at the Sandy Hook elementary school in 2012 not on gun violence or even the act of a crazed gunman. Instead he said it was because “we’ve systematically removed God from our schools” and as a result we should not be “surprised that schools have become a place for carnage.”

4. AIDS insanity:  When running for the US Senate in 1992, Huckabee called for a quarantine of people who had AIDS. He also decried increased government funding for AIDS research, instead suggesting that money should come from “multimillionaire celebrities, such as Elizabeth Taylor [and] Madonna,” who should be encouraged to “give out of their own personal treasuries.” In 2007, Huckabee said he stood by these earlier remarks, but would phrase them differently.

5.  Michael Brown had it coming: In December, Huckabee told us that Michael Brown would be alive if he acted “like something other than a thug.”   He added that he was “disgusted” by politicians and athletes who flashed the “hands up, don’t shoot” gesture.

6. Gay marriage makes Jesus cry: In 2013, Huckabee called gay marriage an “unholy pretzel” that has turned “holy matrimony” into a “perversion.” Huckabee also tweeted that “Jesus wept” over the 2013 US Supreme Court decision striking down DOMA. And Huckabee even said in September that he doesn’t care if he is on “the wrong side of history,” as long as he is “on the right side of the Bible” when it comes to gay marriage.

7.  Sorry if you are already sick: Not only does Huckabee oppose Obamacare, he opposed the one provision that most people like, namely that health insurers shouldn’t be able to deny coverage to those with preexisting medical conditions.

8.  Ignore court decisions/laws that God wouldn’t like: This past September, while speaking of abortion laws and gay marriage court decisions, Huckabee declared that we should not accept “ungodly” judicial rulings that “will cause us to have to stand before God with bloody hands.”

Sure, there are other Huckabee comments I could highlight, like his famous one from last January about women’s libidos, or how Martin Luther King, Jr. would be standing with him in fighting against marriage equality, but I think you get it by now.  Mr. Huckabee far overshadows his kinder, gentler Gov. Huckabee.

Now while many of you might be shaking your head in disbelief over Huckabee’s views, keep in mind that it’s likely that nearly 50 percent of the GOP primary voters in 2016 will agree with most, if not all of them.  And that’s far scarier than anything Huckabee has said.


By: Dean Obeidallah, The Daily Beast, January 7, 2015

January 8, 2015 Posted by | Election 2016, GOP Presidential Candidates, Mike Huckabee | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

“Frauds And Fabricators”: What Drives The Obama Doubters And Haters?

There are Obama doubters and haters out there who claim with righteous anger that they are “vetting” the president, something they say the mainstream media never did. Some of them have said that my new biography — unwittingly, they argue, for I am too dumb to understand what my research has unearthed — proves that Barack Obama’s defining memoir is phony and that his entire life is a fraud. My intent is not to defend Obama or his book; he can take care of himself, and I have my own questions about “Dreams From My Father,” which I make clear in my book. But when comparing the liberties Obama took with composite characters and compressed chronology — which he acknowledged in the introduction to his memoir — to the stretches his most virulent detractors have taken in building their various conspiracies, I believe that they are the frauds and fabricators.

Not all of them are “birthers,” but the notion that the president was not born in the United States remains at the epicenter of the anti-Obama mythology. Here is the conspiracy that would have had to exist if Barack Hussein Obama II were not born in Honolulu, Hawaii, on Aug. 4, 1961:

First, the local newspapers would have had to have been in on the scheme, because they ran notices of his birth among all the other local births that week. Second, the Immigration and Naturalization Service would have had to have been covering something up, because INS officials were closely tracking Barack Obama Sr. when he was at the University of Hawaii on a student visa from Kenya. They thought that he was a bigamist — which he was, having married a woman in Kenya before coming to the States — and a womanizer, which he also was. INS documents in the weeks and months before and after the son’s birth clearly establish the father’s whereabouts and the birth of his son. Finally, the name of Obama’s mother, Stanley Ann, was unusual enough that doctors and nurses in Honolulu remembered it and her giving birth. One prominent doctor was asked by a young journalist if anything interesting had happened in the medical world that week, and he responded, “Well, Stanley had a baby!”

In tandem with the birther notion comes the idea that Obama is a secret Muslim. His Kenyan grandfather, Hussein Onyango, was Muslim; his Indonesian stepfather, Lolo Soetoro, was Muslim; as a boy he was instructed in Islam at a school in Jakarta; and many of his college friends were Muslim. None of this adds up to Obama being Muslim, except in the minds of conspiratorialists. Obama never met his Kenyan grandfather. After infancy, he spent time with his Kenyan father only once, and in any case Barack Obama Sr. was an atheist. The truth is that Muslims had nothing to do with the rise of the Obamas of Kenya and that conservative evangelical Christians were essential every step of the way.

It was proselytizing Seventh-day Adventists who first came to the Obamas’ villages out near Lake Victoria at the start of the 20th century. They taught English and Western ways to the first wave of young boys from the Luo tribe, including Hussein Onyango. His son, the president’s father, was also educated at a missionary school. Later, as a young adult, Barack Obama Sr. was mentored by a remarkable evangelical Christian, Betty Mooney, whose grandfather was one of the founders of Texas Christian University. Mooney, who went to Kenya in the late 1950s to spread the gospel and literacy, met Obama Sr. in Nairobi and hired him to translate some of her literacy books into the Luo tribal language. She encouraged and helped sponsor his coming to the United States and specifically to the University of Hawaii, where he met Stanley Ann Dunham. One can say that President Obama would not exist except for evangelical Christians.

While living in Jakarta from ages 6 through 9, young Obama temporarily took the last name of his stepfather, Soetoro, for school purposes. He was listed as a Muslim on school documents because students were listed in the religion of their fathers. Lolo was not particularly religious; Stanley Ann was spiritual but not part of any formal religion. For most of his three-plus years in Indonesia, Obama attended a Catholic grade school. When his family moved to a better neighborhood in his final year, he went to the local grade school, one of the best in the city. The central doctrine taught at S.D. Besuki was not Islam but Pancasila, or five principles, of modern Indonesia, which evoked the unity of the islands on the vast archipelago, social justice and a belief in one God. Conservative Muslims detested Pancasila (a Sanskrit word revealing Indonesia’s Hindu heritage), insisting that it was too liberal and open to too many religions and interpretations.

In both the issues of Obama’s birth and of his religion, documents and common sense lead in one direction. Obama’s doubters run the other way: His birth certificates must be fake; his espoused Christianity must be a cover. Another group of right-wing doubters hold on to the notion that Obama is a closet socialist, some sort of Manchurian candidate, an idea that his every move as a pragmatic liberal politician over the past 16 years has utterly disproved. Some others maintain that he was not smart enough to get into Occidental, Columbia and Harvard Law, and too inept to write his own memoir, which one particularly obsessed conspiratorialist claims was penned by the former radical Bill Ayers. What about the well-written letters from Obama that are published in my book? Those, too, must be frauds slipped to me by the Obama administration.

In the introduction to my book, I took note of a sick political culture where “facts are so easily twisted for political purposes and where strange armies of ideological pseudo-historians roam the biographical fields in search of stray ammunition.” That sentence is now cited on right-wing Web sites as evidence that I hold them in contempt. True enough, one of the few accurate things that I’ve read from them. I do hold some of them in contempt, not because of their politics, nor because of their dislike of Obama. Political debate and disagreement are the lifeblood of American democracy. No, I hold them in contempt for the way they disregard facts and common sense and undermine the role of serious history as they concoct conspiracy theories that portray the president as dangerous, alien and less than American.

What drives them? Some of it can be attributed to the give-and-take of today’s harsh ideological divide. Some of it can be explained by the way misinformation spreads virally to millions of like-minded people, reinforcing preconceptions. And some of it, I believe, arises out of fears of demographic changes in this country, and out of racism.

By: David Maraniss, Associate Editor, The Washington Post, July 27, 2012

July 30, 2012 Posted by | Election 2012 | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment


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