February 26th, 2009
02:40 PM ET
5 years ago

Huckabee blasts McCain, warns of socialism

Speaking at CPAC, Mike Huckabee governor took McCain to task for voting for the financial bailout last October, a move the former Arkansas governor said betrayed the party’s core beliefs.
Speaking at CPAC, Mike Huckabee governor took McCain to task for voting for the financial bailout last October, a move the former Arkansas governor said betrayed the party’s core beliefs.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Mike Huckabee and John McCain got along famously during the Republican presidential campaign, but now Huckabee - possibly mulling another bid in 2012 - is putting some space between himself and the former GOP nominee.

Speaking at CPAC, the annual gathering of conservative activists, the former Arkansas governor took McCain to task for voting for the financial bailout last October, a move Huckabee said betrayed the party’s core beliefs.

“With all due respect, Sen. McCain dramatically suspended his campaign and flew back to Washington not to champion those conservative Republicans [in the House], but to join meekly with Barack Obama in voting for the bailout, a bailout most American opposed,” he said.

Huckabee said he went along with the Republican ticket because he was “a good soldier,” but that the bailout vote may have sunk McCain’s campaign.

“I tell you, that moment was not our best moment,” he said. “It would have been our best shot at winning the White House a chance to offer a true authentic, conservative choice rather than a big government echo, rather than a meek, ‘me too’ way of doing things.”

Huckabee frustrated some Republican primary voters during the campaign because he was perceived as being too supportive of government spending on social programs, but in his remarks Thursday, he stressed his opposition to the financial bailout and President Obama’s stimulus package. Those spending bills, he said, have given conservatives a chance to define themselves against liberal overreach.

“The Union of Soviet Socialist Republics may be dead, but the Union of American Socialist Republics is being born,” he said.

Still, Huckabee struck back at his critics, saying he was "prophetic" in warning during his campaign about the dangers of a "Wall Street to Washington Axis of Power that was out of control."


Filed under: John McCain • Mike Huckabee
soundoff (205 Responses)
  1. Wadiiah

    TRUTH February 26th, 2009 3:26 pm ET

    "Carlo- Sure we have always had social programs in this country, but it WAS a pre-dominantly capitalist society. Under Obama, in 8 years we will look like Cuba where everyone lives in government housing and drives a 1964 Chevrolet because that is all that is available. Give it a rest Carlo."

    I read this as a blog posted on another website. Typical rethug, recycling unusable garbage!

    February 26, 2009 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  2. S. Hellier

    I didn't know being a minister disqualified you from being in politics. People hate Huckabee, because he was a Pastor? You all have sunk very low, the same people who defend Rev. Wright mock Huckabee jusy because of his party.

    February 26, 2009 03:41 pm at 3:41 pm |
  3. Streamwood Bill

    We need new Republican leaders who are in tune with the America of today, not the America of the 1980s.

    Huckabee is same old, same old and doesn't fit the requirements.

    February 26, 2009 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  4. Bob in Pa

    Ole Huck is correct.

    February 26, 2009 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  5. Kevin Denver Colorado

    Your're corrct.. Jesus did just as you said.

    But… he taught those things because he was a decent person, not to further his own agenda. Big difference.

    ALL jesus did was push his agenda. FOOLS

    February 26, 2009 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  6. Alfred E Neumann

    In 2005 when they were in sight of losing the House, conservatives hit upon immigration as a way to bolster support.

    In 2009 when they can no longer see the tunnel let alone the light, they are spreading the word of socialism.

    It's a losing hand – time to throw in the cards and ask for a new deck.

    February 26, 2009 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  7. Earl Barnett

    Hukabee is not a deacon. He is an extraordinarily successful ordained Baptist minister, intellectual author, and former successful governor of Arkansas. Regarding the comment that he does not belong in politics reeks of communism where religion is forced underground and denied a voice in the public arena. Such an opinion can be allowed for a person to have, but its enaction is nothing short of butt-ignorance of the founding principles of the United States, the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and its Amendments.

    February 26, 2009 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  8. topher

    how could someone so nice be a conservative

    February 26, 2009 03:43 pm at 3:43 pm |
  9. Ken

    "Forced sharing and redistribution of wealth is certainly socialism…it sure isnt capitalism! "

    I find it interesting that over the past 15 years, including the Republican administrations, the people in the blue states pay more taxes to the federal government (per capita), while the people in the red states receive more money from the federal government (per capita). And yet, it is the red-staters who complain about "redistribution of wealth".

    Tell you what, red-staters. When the federal government contracts with a defense firm in your state to design some new military jet, or when the federal government gives your state money to pave highways, build levies, or improve your schools, JUST SAY NO. I mean, since you are all against "redistribution of wealth" and all, I don't think blue-staters should have to subsidize you slackers in red states. Sound fair?

    February 26, 2009 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  10. Dave

    Huckabee is a rat but agree with him here. We should never vote for anyone who went along with these stimulus heists.

    February 26, 2009 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  11. Lolly, CO

    While so called "conservatives" redistribute the wealth to the rich, all you poorr dumb righties feel happy about it? I dont get it. 95% of you here will benefit because hObam ais removing the burden overly placed on you by the rich to provide basic minimum standard of living in US. Oh i forgt you like your trailer, trash.

    February 26, 2009 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  12. Sheri

    Don't like Huckabee for president. Huckabee is NOT presidential

    February 26, 2009 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  13. the guy your going to hate

    you guys are all just a bunch of small time people who just annoy everyone around you with your STRONG belief system. your just as much fun as the people from church who come up to you while you are out to lunch to tell you about their love for Jesus.

    February 26, 2009 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  14. Dave

    Unshrub- much like the joke the Dems have been. please don't fail to realize that politics is always cyclical. it's a part of the two-party scam.

    February 26, 2009 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  15. FreeNLovIt

    Mike Huckabee would have made a great President. I heard that while he was a governor in AK, he made a tough choice, consolidating schools to benefit the whole. I trust that he will do the right thing. One thing for sure, I dont know where our brains went, but I cant believe our politicians were stupid enough to bail the banks out. There could have been other alternatives. I do like Huckabee.

    February 26, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  16. JimG

    BLAAARGH! SOCIALISM! SOCIALISM! BOOGABOOGABOOGA!!!

    These clowns have turned socialism into a scare word because nobody even remembers what it means. There's never been a "socialist" country by strict definition, though many have claimed that; and bailing out avowedly capitalist institutions is a loooooooong way from socialism too. If anything, it's shoring up the current system despite greedy corporate bunglers' obvious inability to manage themselves.

    February 26, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  17. steve cannizaro

    The Republic Party has hoisted itself on its own pitard. They can't back off from their right-wing drivel now because they would lose their base and be labeled flip-floppers. They have the religious nuts like Palin and Jindal who are creationisists and believe the earth is literally no more than 5,000 years old and that Man and Dinosaurs walked together. Hell, they think reuns of the Flintstones are documentaries. Given that, what would be the role of science in another Republican administration – it would be just like the Bush administration in which given a choice between the Bible and science they go with the Bible. So, Republicans have no new ideas, just the same old garbage that voters finally saw through. Whenever they speak they might as well play a tape-recording that says, "cut taxes on the rich; cut taxes on the rich," cause that's all they have to say.

    February 26, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  18. Tracy

    Hey Mike – this is 2009, not 1959. What's next? You want a list of Hollywood actors suspected of being Communists?

    February 26, 2009 03:46 pm at 3:46 pm |
  19. Lush Limprick is the real Republican Nazi Committee chairman!

    First it is party inbreeding, now it is a feeding frenzy.

    Let the games begin, and since Huckleberry is a bible beater this may even include lions and repub "christians" as gladiators. Yummy!

    Don't forget to get the thumbs up from of the Emperor the bald, bloated bonehead before the final strike!

    February 26, 2009 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  20. Viper

    Go get em Huck!!

    February 26, 2009 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  21. FreeNLovIt

    Huckabee supportive of government spending on social programs? The guy is willilng to do the right thing, remember, even Jesus FED hungry crowds. There's nothing wrong with showing a bit of a good Samaritan. Mike is a well-rounded politicians.

    February 26, 2009 03:47 pm at 3:47 pm |
  22. steve cannizaro

    The Republic Party has hoisted itself on its own pitard. They can't back off from their right-wing drivel now because they would lose their base and be labeled flip-floppers. They have the religious nuts like Palin and Jindal who are creationisists and believe the earth is literally no more than 5,000 years old and that Man and Dinosaurs walked together. Hell, they think reruns of the Flintstones are documentaries. Given that, what would be the role of science in another Republican administration – it would be just like the Bush administration in which given a choice between the Bible and science they go with the Bible. So, Republicans have no new ideas, just the same old garbage that voters finally saw through. Whenever they speak they might as well play a tape-recording that says, "cut taxes on the rich; cut taxes on the rich," cause that's all they have to say.

    February 26, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  23. Jerry

    Bohenr, Cantor, Palin, Huchabee, Jindal truly represent the Republican Party as it wanders for the next forty years in the Wilderness looking for its lost soul.

    February 26, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  24. tom

    I just hope its the liberal wackos that get hurt the most by obama's wacko socialist policies. spending your way to prosperity is so stupid only a liberal could come up with it.

    February 26, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
  25. Len

    To Deborah,

    Stop listening to Rush Limbaugh!

    February 26, 2009 03:50 pm at 3:50 pm |
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