SECOND NEXUS PERSPECTIVE
Yes, he may be little more than an ultra-conservative ideologue. Yes, he may only be running to maintain enough political relevance to get paid. And yes, he did stand next to the new darling of the conservative fringe, Kim Davis, clasping her hand as if in a religious revival as they blared “Eye of the Tiger” after she was released from jail.
But who is Huckabee, and why exactly don’t we heart him?
Mike Dale Huckabee, who like Bill Clinton is from “a place called Hope” in Arkansas, rocketed to fame after entering his first presidential bid eight years ago. The former Baptist pastor-turned-Arkansas governor stepped to the forefront of conservative politics after an unexpectedly strong showing at the Iowa Straw Poll in 2007. He didn’t win, but he managed to finish in second place despite having been massively outspent by his competitors.
Huckabee went on to prove that his brand of politics was more than a passing fad when, in 2008, he beat the odds and won the Iowa caucus, as well as races in seven other states. Despite a respectable collection of devoted delegates, a Huckabee presidency was not-to-be; he eventually lost the GOP nomination to Arizona Senator John McCain.
Today, it’s hard–even befuddling–to understand how Huckabee did so well in the run up to the 2008 election. His former national political successes become all the more terrifying upon discovering, for instance, that his religious convictions compel him to assert that ten-year-old rape victims should be required to give birth. He also appears to fundamentally misunderstand how the law works, having recently claimed (on camera, no less) that Dred Scott v. Sanford was “still, to this day, the law of the land.” Dred Scott was formally overturned after the Civil War through adoption of the Fourteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.
But did Americans really know the man they voted for in 2007? Probably not.
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