Huckabee's immigration plan is derived from a National Review article.
BLUFFTON, South Carolina (CNN) - The nine-point immigration plan released Friday by former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee came with a footnote:
"Note: This plan is partially modeled on a proposal by Mark Krikorian, Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies." That proposal by the conservative anti-illegal immigration activist was published in the National Review in May 2005.
Not only is Huckabee's plan strikingly similar to the magazine piece – in some cases, it contains exact quotations copied over from the article.
For instance, the Huckabee plan states that "Employment is the chief draw for most illegal immigrants and denying them jobs is the centerpiece of an attrition strategy."
Krikorian's article contains that same statement, verbatim.
Another example: Krikorian writes that "A presidential candidate should promote better cooperation by supporting legislative measures such as the CLEAR Act, which aims to systematize the relationship between local law and federal immigration officials."
Huckabee's plan seeks to empower local authorities by promoting "better cooperation on enforcement by supporting legislative measures such as the CLEAR Act, which aims to systematize the relationship between local law and federal immigration officials."
In all, there are nine instances of similar sentences or phrases appearing in both plans.
Huckabee said Friday he "absolutely" wanted his plan to mirror Krikorian’s so closely, and that the footnote made clear that his campaign did not plagiarize the article.
"We unapologetically admit that we have based it on the proposal that was in there, because we thought it was really one of the most rational approaches," Huckabee told reporters Friday.
The cribbing from Krikorian, who is known for his position in favor of major new limits on immigration, comes after charges from Huckabee’s Republican rival that he is soft on illegal immigration, a major campaign issue in early-voting states like Iowa and South Carolina.
– CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby