February 5th, 2008
11:42 PM ET
9 years ago

Schneider: Huckabee's conservative support doesn't extend past the South

(CNN) - Mike Huckabee has clearly done well tonight, largely thanks to Southern conservatives. But a closer look into the exit polls show the former Arkansas governor's conservative support largely evaporates beyond the South.

According to our exit polls, Huckabee beat Romney among all Southern conservatives, 41 percent to 28 percent. McCain came in third among Southern conservatives, with 25 percent.

But beyond the Southern states, Huckabee falls into a distant third for conservative support. Among non-Southern conservatives, Romney beats McCain, 44 percent to 33 percent. Huckabee is all the way back at 16 percent.

Translation: Huckabee is a regional candidate.

- CNN Senior Political Analyst Bill Schneider

Filed under: Schneider analysis
soundoff (48 Responses)
  1. Carl

    A McCain/Hucklebee ticket would win next year from the looks of it... Huck carries the Southern and Midwest... McCain gets the West and New England...

    Now I say this as a liberal, and I would love someone that is pro Huck's thinking to explain to me why the world is only 7,000 years old, which means by that logic that thousands of species of dinosaurs and mammals became extinct while the world took shape in 1000 years from nothing.

    I'm not doubting the idea of Creation. I believe it to be so, but I just think that one day in God's terms is not a day for us... I thought that when I read Genesis at 5 years old and still to do this day.

    I would just love someone to explain their views since I really have never heard that side of the argument...

    Thanks and God bless...

    February 6, 2008 12:19 am at 12:19 am |
  2. Bill

    When are you cowards in the press going to start reporting what is happening with Huckabee? His support has little to do with being conservative. Tell it like it is without the political correctness!

    Huckabee is winning the Fanatical Evangelical VotERs (the FEVER squads ) that still fear or hate Mormonism. These FEVER squads are turning out in record number not because of political drive, but rather due to religious bias.

    If by some weird anomaly Huckabee were to take this thing away from McCain the FEVER squad would view it as a "miracle". They would then be very vocal in their anti-Clinton rhetoric.

    Sadly they are too narrow minded to recognize that the threat to them (not me) is not Mormonism (Mitt Romney), it is Hillary Clinton. If they really want to protect their God-fearing (or God-foresaken) agenda they should have been rallying to Obama.

    February 6, 2008 12:23 am at 12:23 am |
  3. Chief

    Memo to Russert and Williams: Romney wins 6 states today (across the country, plus the one that was stolen from him) and Huckabee wins 5 states in one region minus the one he stole). Romney's still got scoreboard on Huckabee in states and delegates won.

    February 6, 2008 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  4. berrys4


    go back to sleep and please stay in New York or Washington D.C. where no one has a clue about the rest of the world. especially irrelivant bill.

    February 6, 2008 12:34 am at 12:34 am |
  5. rs wood

    The reason is because Moneybags and the media convinced the conservatives in other states that Mitt was the man vs. McCain, and that Huckabee had left the race. If Romney had exited the campaign, the majority of those votes would be Huckabee's, and so his support would be far greater than the south.

    But, no whining. Huckabee is an incredibly strong candidate, getting more delegates per dollar spent than anyone. It's because of his message.

    February 6, 2008 12:34 am at 12:34 am |
  6. Chris, Bethesda, Maryland

    The fact that Huckabee's only real strength is in the South sort of says it all. Georgia, really? One of the four states George Wallace carried in '68? Yeah, they've always been a great measure of our nation's values.

    February 6, 2008 12:34 am at 12:34 am |
  7. guy strohmeier

    Carl, Try Dennis Petersons book The Mysteries of Creation, It should help you.

    February 6, 2008 12:37 am at 12:37 am |
  8. Renee

    We love Mike! And we pray that he will get the nomination. If McCain did end up with the nomination, he would be wise to choose Huckabee as the Vice Pres., becuse Huck can win them the conservative Christian votes.

    February 6, 2008 01:05 am at 1:05 am |
  9. Raf

    Pretty clear that McCain will take Huckabee as running mate to bolster his weak vote in the South, although it's not clear how much that gimmick works. Will arch-conservatives that regard McCain as a liberal (for all his hawkish, anti-abortion ways) come on side just because he has a good ol' southern boy in the VP chair?

    February 6, 2008 01:07 am at 1:07 am |
  10. Nancy Meacham

    This is especially to Carl, who wanted someone to share their views about creation/evolution. Please go to gospelmessagesonline.com and read the little booklet by clicking on it. The second half of the booklet explains some thoughts on the subject. True, the Bible says that to the Lord, one day is as a thousand years, so we don't know exactly for sure. However, the geneology in the Bible tells how old the father was when the son was born and that geneology can be traced all the way to Jesus from Adam, and if you add it all up, it's about 6000 years. Keep in mind there was a big world wide flood, the evidence of which is all over the world. After the flood, there was no longer a mist over the whole earth, and people's and animals life span dropped from almost a thousand years to about 70 years. Reptiles of course, grow as long as they live, so the dinosaurs could very well still be here but just smaller. You'll see more at the website I mentioned above.

    Thanks for asking.

    Sincerely, Nancy M. Meacham, B.S., M.A.Ed.

    February 6, 2008 01:26 am at 1:26 am |
  11. Joe

    Obviously Huckabee is a regional candidate because he drops below 20% outside the South. It looks like the Republican party is split, each candidate representing one of the Republican arms – Social (Evangelicals), Military, and Fiscal. Does McCain take Huckabee to bolster his polls in the South but lose Romney supporters which includes talk radio and the like? Does he take Romney risking losing the South because of anti-mormon sentiment (I would say probably not because it seems he hates Romney and that may be too risky to do)?

    I wonder if McCain can win the presidency with no support from talk radio and the strong conservatives. We can see from a lot of the results today that Democrats brought a lot more people to the polls. I think McCain has a hard road to win the white house. Democrats tend to vote for Democrats over any liberal Republican. He'll have to really become personable to win them over and McCain just isn't that.

    February 6, 2008 01:36 am at 1:36 am |
  12. Anita

    Sorry Robin that won't appease this Christian voter. It would probably make it that much harder for me to vote for McCain. The dirty tricks & lying about other candidates that Huckabee has adheared to in this campaign makes me not want to even look a him on the tv screen. He is making Christians look really bad!

    February 6, 2008 01:54 am at 1:54 am |
  13. Jeremiah Grant - Phoenix, AZ

    Once again, Bill Schneider is spot on.

    I know I know...all you Huck supporters are going to argue with him because you're delusional about your man on some mission from God, but the numbers don't lie.

    In FL, Huck won 6% of the non-Evangelical vote. In CA, he won 5% of the non-Evangelical vote. Once again, he even failed to carry the Evangelical vote in the vast majority of the Super Tuesday states.

    That's not mean. That's not to say that he isn't a nice guy. That's not to say that he doesn't even have a decent record or some decent ideas......

    It's just reality. Tonight was huge for Huckabee (Congratulations!), but let's be honest. His wins were limited to Southern states. Guess what. There are only a couple Southern states left. So....where does he go from here? There's nowhere left to go.

    You still want to tell me he's playing to win the nomination? It's mathematically impossible at this point given his lack of ability to win outside of states with overwhelming Evangelical populations. Again, that's not mean. It's simply a fact that has been shown in state after state after state.

    February 6, 2008 02:06 am at 2:06 am |
  14. Amir

    Poor Dr Ron Paul. He is not even mentioned once in the above articles!

    February 6, 2008 02:07 am at 2:07 am |
  15. thom

    Barack will get a lesson in politics today....it's a lesson on delegates....the thing is he will be back in 2016 for 8 more demo years

    February 6, 2008 02:13 am at 2:13 am |
  16. thom

    Has anyone noticed the left side of McCain's face???? What's up with that???

    February 6, 2008 02:25 am at 2:25 am |
  17. John

    I'm an agnostic, from the north and educated and quite frankly I really like Huckabee. He has shown me consistancy and good nature. One thing people are overlooking is that if you look at cnn's exit poll in Georgia Huckabee did exceptionally well with the vote under 35 years old...He won nearly half of that vote. Huckabee is a very appealing candidate and is much more electable than people are willing to give him credit for.

    February 6, 2008 03:19 am at 3:19 am |
  18. Michael

    What are you talking about Dean? How is Huckabee hurting the conservative right? The conservatives are pleased to see someone who has actually stood by their side of the issues for so long. Certainly McCain and Romney have not advocated conservative platform issues throughout their political careers.

    Huckabee's support can certainly extend outside the South Mr. Schneider. I believe his new economic ideas will resonate with many. They are not what traditional conservatives are used to, but they are most certainly another take on how to promote the free market without devastating the small business.

    Huckabee is the ideal conservative my friends with a solid and principled social and family values stance and a unique and flexible (still very free market oriented) economic approach to making ALL Americans realize the benefits of our ingenuity. Mike is for us.

    February 6, 2008 03:20 am at 3:20 am |
  19. John

    It is interesting to remark history is made today. Although, for the first time, we have such a diverse range of strong candidates. We can reflect back on our personal perspective and analysis of what took place by a revolutionary form of comments. The blog is here to stay

    February 6, 2008 03:22 am at 3:22 am |
  20. david

    I believe he had melanoma (skin cancer) and had to get a large chunk cut out.

    GO HILLARY BABY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    February 6, 2008 06:17 am at 6:17 am |
  21. J.S.

    In comparisons the same people who voted for Huckabee would use on others, ironically the storms that hit yesterday hit states where Huckabee won. Perhaps God is trying to tell THEM something. Perhaps He is even trying to give them a wake up call that Huckabee is a a grade A hypocrite and that he would destroy our nation if he were elected. God's wrath is used liberally to condemn others not of the religious persuasion of Huckabee's voting block, will they now take note and apply it to themselves.

    February 6, 2008 06:47 am at 6:47 am |
  22. Jim Rob

    Geee big surprise that Gomer Fudd got the highest support from the (RED) States with the highest rates of divorce. His issues don't matter ...as long as he touts the Bible. He's taking one from the GWB playbook (you know, be a beer-swilling, coke-snorting cheerleading frat boy but declare you're born again and it's all ok).

    Let the southern states succeed; let their educated emigrate north and they can elect Gomer Fudd as their Confederate President and we'll see how God's Chosen People will look in a few years.

    And nice way of stretching God's "day = years" crap – that's some real mental gymnastics to describe a square circle. If God meant years, he would have said years, but then some Bible thumpers don't realize that "day" is a measurement of the Earth's spin on its axis. But then, Gods don't write books; their crazy followers do.

    February 6, 2008 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  23. Stacy

    I can't believe that anyone would expect Huckabee to be a good VP choice for McCain. Regardless of who the GOP candidate is, it's going to be tough for Republicans to win the final election thanks to the current administration and increases in minority and female voter registration this time around. I could see a left-leaning independent voting for McCain (myself, for one) but there's no way I'll vote for McCain if his running mate is an evangelical hillbilly.

    February 6, 2008 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
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