25 Reasons Why Huckabee Should Be Chosen As Vice President
1. Experience: He has ten and a half years experience running a government as the Chief Executive. This is a longer tenure of governmental Chief Executive experience than any other 2008 Presidential candidate and is longer than any current governor of either party.
2. Experience: He was trusted by his Governor peers of both parties to serve as the Chairman of the bipartisan National Governor’s Association, one of the nation’s most respected public policy organizations.
3. Experience: In addition to his long experience in Government, Huckabee had a previous career as a successful and popular Pastor and was also elected to be the President of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention. He is also the author of six books and is in the process of completing his seventh.
4. Experience: Because historically, Presidents who have been Governors have performed better than those who were not, McCain would be wise to pick a long-term Governor like Huckabee. Presidents who never held Executive offices but who had running mates who did have performed better than Presidents who never held Executive offices but did not have running mates with Executive Experience either.
5. Biography: Although he has more experience running a government than any other national politician, he is actually less than six years older than Barack Obama.
6. Biography: In a time when many politicians of both parties have been ensnared in tawdry personal scandals, Huckabee has a very stable family life, having been married to the same woman for 34 years and being the father of three grown children who are still close to him and who have helped run his campaign.
7. Electability: There have been five bellwether states - Ohio, Missouri, Louisiana, Kentucky, and Arkansas - that have correctly predicted the winner of the General Election for each of the past eight elections (dating back to 1976). Of those, in the GOP Primaries, Huckabee won the popular vote in two of them (Arkansas and Louisiana), coming in second to McCain in the other three while McCain won the popular vote in three of them (Ohio, Missouri and Kentucky), coming in second to Huckabee in the other two. The margin between the two in the state of Missouri was extremely narrow. And in the state of Kentucky, Huckabee even managed to come in second to John McCain three and a half months after he suspended his campaign and endorsed McCain.
8. Conservative Support: In 1998, Huckabee came in second (to John Ashcroft) in a Christian Coalition Presidential Straw Poll. (He actually came in higher than then-Governor George W. Bush). Edward Walsh wrote for the Washington Post (2/17/1998) that “It's settled. The Christian Coalition has surveyed its leadership and decided that Sen. John D. Ashcroft (R-Mo.) should be the next president and Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) should be his vice president.”
9. Conservative Support: J.C. Watts, who represents both the concerns of Evangelicals and African Americans, has expressed dismay at the Republican Party’s failure to reach out to both groups. But the inclusion of Huckabee on the ticket would do a lot to shore up this support and even lure voters from some traditional Democratic groups to the Republican ticket.
10. Conservative Support: Remember the Club For Growth and their endless attacks on Mike Huckabee? Isn’t it interesting that some of these same people, who called Huckabee a liberal, were begging him to run for the U.S. Senate – or even to become the head of the RNC – within a week of him ending his Presidential bid. One might ask “why would self-proclaimed fiscal conservatives want a liberal to take over the party?” The answer is that their opposition to him was not substantive in nature. And just as they wanted to promote ucHuckabHucHuckabee into higher levels of responsibility, they would very likely get behind a McCain/Huckabee ticket, no matter how much they’re kicking and screaming now.
11. Geographical support: With Barack Obama making progress in the south, Mike Huckabee, as a long-term and popular southern Governor, secures this backbone of Republican support. There was even a story in the news about some Alabama politicians almost fighting over which one of them would get Huckabee’s endorsement.
12. Media Presence: Mike Huckabee has many years of experience in communicating with the public over the mass media. His first job was reading the news on the local radio station at age 14. He started two full-time television stations at the churches he pastured and has recently been awarded a contract at Fox News.
13. Broad Appeal: He achieved cross-party popularity, becoming only the second Republican Governor of Arkansas since Reconstruction and remaining in the job until term limits forced him out. He won two elections for Lieutenant Governor and two as Governor – in the heart of the Clinton political machine and at a time when Clinton was a popular President who supported his opponents.
14. Broad Appeal: In Arkansas, Huckabee won with voters of every age group, all voters making more than $15,000 a year, and won or nearly tied voters of every education level. He also won almost all Republicans voters, the majority of Independents and more than a third of Democrats.
15. Broad Appeal: He has the greatest support amoung African Americans of any national Republican politician in decades. He won 48% of the black vote in Arkansas. He is very highly regarded by black voters nationwide. Since several of the southern states that have large black populations are showing surprising strength by Obama, Huckabee would appeal to these many of these voters who are conservative, disagree with Obama on the issues, but feel rejected by the Republican Party.
16. Broad Appeal: In addition to Evangelicals, blacks, blue collar voters and southerners, Huckabee is a favorite of the ultimate fiscal conservatives – supporters of the Fair Tax. These are the people who don’t just complain about high taxes but actually want to do something about them.
17. Broad Appeal: As some journalists who have bothered to actually talk to Huckabee supporters have discovered, we’re not all Evangelicals. Huckabee won four million votes but didn’t even get the majority of the Evangelical vote, which was split among multiple candidates.
18. Broad Appeal: Even Huckabee’s harshest critics, such as Rich Lowry of the National Review, grudgingly acknowledge that Huckabee would be “just the right Republican for this particular moment, when pocketbook concerns are looming so large.” Even though they continue to slam him and question his economic credentials, they clearly understand that his message has resonated with the public that is so disenchanted with the status quo.
19. Key Issues: At a time that the nation is concerned with health care, Huckabee is both an advocate for preventive health through a healthy lifestyle and an example of it – he lost 110 pounds after being diagnosed with diabetes. He wrote a book on losing weight and launched a childhood obesity campaign with the American Heart Association. And he even offers a personal example of lowering health care costs – he stopped needing to take diabetes medication when he lost weight.
20. Campaign Asset: Huckabee spent less money per vote than any candidate in the 2008 Campaign and perhaps less money per vote than any candidate in the past three decades. In a time that McCain finds himself severely underfunded in comparison with Barack Obama, Huckabee has experience in capitalizing on free media and stretching campaign dollars to the extent of outperforming better funded rivals.
21. Campaign Asset: On any ticket that includes Huckabee, his bloggers come with him. Huckabee has a massive web of grassroots activists, including Huck’s Army, a dedicated group of volunteers who like to share with other people why we think this guy is so cool. We aren’t paid. We spend some of our valuable free time advocating issues that are important to us, doing lots of research and in some cases providing the type of good press that no ad agency or political consultant can buy.
22. Campaign Asset: It’s not all about Huckabee’s online supporters. There are also truckers for Huckabee, Homeschoolers for Huckabee, conservative blacks for Huckabee. Etcetera, etcetera, etcetera. While a good number of these people might vote for a ticket that didn’t include Huckabee, they definitely would vote for one that would include him. And more important than that, they would get out and fight and work hard for it. In a close election, there is a big difference between having a good number of lukewarm supporters and a greater number of fired-up supporters.
23. Campaign Asset: Huckabee’s urging of his party to approach their differences with Senator Obama with civility and focus on the issues instead of personal attacks has earned him praise from a wide variety of groups whose support will be important in the General Election.
24. Broad Appeal: Although Huckabee has unshakable socially conservative credentials, a lock on the south, and support from many who oppose the Federal Tax Code, he is also personally liked by many who disagree with him on almost every issue. On the liberal blog the Huffington Post, Drew Westin wrote “from the first time I watched Huckabee, he made me nervous, because I disliked most of what he said but I liked him anyway” and called him “the most politically intelligent of the candidates on the Republican side in 2008” and praised his “sense of humor” and “genuineness.” Many Democrats have spoken kindly of Huckabee especially as he urged his party to campaign against Obama on the issues instead of through personal attacks and as he defended Hillary Clinton against pressure to drop out.
25. Campaign Asset: He hasn’t made statements against McCain that could be used against McCain by the Obama camp during the General Election.