Thursday, December 27, 2007

Huckabee: The Republican Wedge

by Brent Moritz

I saw this article Huckabee's Rise Drives Wedge Between Wall Street, Evangelicals reported on by Matthew Benjamin 12/27/07. It has some of the same fears regarding Huckabee we have reported for some time. A few excerpts include:

The former Arkansas governor has surged in Republican presidential-preference polls, winning the support of Christian fundamentalists while peppering his campaign rhetoric with jabs at the financial industry... In doing so, he threatens the uneasy if effective coalition Republicans have counted on for three decades: abortion opponents and other social-issue activists supplying foot soldiers, proponents of tax cuts and business-friendly regulatory policies putting up the money and getting the biggest economic benefits.

"Huckabee puts this long-simmering feud between the social-conservative wing and the country-club and business crowd into starker contrast,'' said Stuart Rothenberg, publisher of the nonpartisan Rothenberg Political Report in Washington.

The (Club for Growth) says Huckabee's tax increases while governor from 1996 to 2007 far surpassed reductions, with the average tax burden for state residents increasing 47 percent during his tenure.

"Mike Huckabee is not an economic conservative,'' said Pat Toomey, a former Pennsylvania congressman and the club's president. "He's the only Republican in the field who really is truly a big-government liberal.''

What Benjamin notes is the same thing we have been worried about for some here at Mitt Rocks!: Huckabee may have gained support within the Republican Party, but his gains may come at the expense of Republican success over the long term.

On the other hand, Mitt Romney is well-positioned to unite both the social conservatives and fiscal conservatives within the Republican Party. More than that, Romney can bring this sort of leadership to the country, a strong counterweight to the tax and spend policies of big-government liberals.

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