May 12th, 2009
03:36 PM ET
5 years ago

Huckabee slams Republican leaders' 'listening tour'

Huckabee isn't a fan of the GOP's new 'listening tour.'
Huckabee isn't a fan of the GOP's new 'listening tour.'

(CNN) - Former presidential candidate Mike Huckabee is continuing to deride his party's leaders in Washington, saying Monday he has trouble keeping a straight face over the GOP's newly-launched "listening tour."

"It's hard to keep from laughing out loud when people living in the bubble of the Beltway suddenly wake up one day and think they ought to have a listening tour; even funnier when their first earful expedition takes them all the way to the suburbs of Washington, D.C.," the former Arkansas governor wrote in a column on Fox News' Web site.

Earlier this month, Rep. Eric Cantor, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney kicked off a campaign by party leaders to reshape the GOP's image, gathering at a restaurant in northern Virginia for the first of a series of town hall meetings.

The goal of the initiative, the National Council for a New America, is to connect Republican leaders with voters across the country to help get the party's electoral fortunes back on track.

"If some of these leaders had been listening already, they wouldn't need to form a group to start listening now," wrote Huckabee. "Some of the ones who have decided to start listening sure weren't listening last fall when they were supporting the TARP bailout bill that pretty much discredited any semblance of conservative conviction."

Huckabee echoed a similar sentiment last week, telling a California newspaper the GOP was at risk of becoming "irrelevant as the Whigs" if it moderated its policies.


Filed under: Mike Huckabee
soundoff (302 Responses)
  1. JS007

    Ha ha, while I agree with Huckabee, he's not really the one to talk. He could not even win the Republican primary. The only votes he got were from the most rabid Evangelicals. As for TARP, without it America would be in Great Depression 2 right now. The idea of TARP and the bailouts was a necessary one, the problem was the crooked execution by Paulson. The solution is to stop voting for crooks, not to disband government.

    May 12, 2009 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  2. Georgia Gal

    Since when is Jeb Bush and Mitt Romney the GOP's party leader's in Washington?? Neither one of them has ever held an office that required them to be in Washington. As a matter of fact, they both held the same exact office that Huckabee did. Governor of their respective states.

    May 12, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  3. Kade

    For heaven's sake, what will those silly Republicans think of next? They do keep us laughing!

    May 12, 2009 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  4. ANGIE IN PA

    The Infighting continues they really are a mess and Destroying Eachother RIP GOP!

    May 12, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  5. Marie

    I have watched carefully, and all I see are a bunch of old, angry white men. These men were probably Democrats until Pres. Johnson signed the Voting Act and then they became Republicans, well now, they are NOTHING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 12, 2009 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  6. al in memphis

    Seemed like he was consider an outsider looking in during the campaign. Truth is that was probably the better of the choices. Atleast he provide some rationale about his position on the issues.

    May 12, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  7. proud army navy mom

    Huckabee and the whole repug party are a bunch of hypocrites.

    They are revisionists and straight up liars. Even when they are supposed to be listening that still can't hear.

    Nobody trusts a word that comes out of the lying lips

    May 12, 2009 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  8. Jason

    A political party intent on limiting itself to only the true believers is a party that won't last long in this country... Huckster is right about that. And the concept that beltway divas and insiders are going to listen to "average americans " is laughable. Especially when one of them is a silver–spoon empire crony like Jebbie.

    May 12, 2009 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  9. Erik in Real Pennsylvania

    Remember, Rep. Ccantor changed the label and said it wasn't a "listening tour" after Mr. Limbaugh criticized the idea of a listening tour.

    Way to go, Republicans. This is the cohesiveness the Democrats need to stay in power indefinitely. Who speaks for the Republican Party these days?

    May 12, 2009 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
  10. David

    Mike; I got news for you and your buddies your already irrelavave. What you've done for the last 8 years is treason to me and others, that you let traitors ruin this country. You should all demand some justice be done to heal the country, but I know your party is more important than that is'nt it!

    May 12, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  11. Marge

    I can't understand and not one republican will ever be able to explain to me WHY THEY SAY THEY ARE THE ONLY ONES TO LOVE THIS COUNTRY.

    Does that mean all the democratic military who fought for their country don't love it. Does that mean that all the democrats who are volunteering to help the poor, (think President Carter and Habitat for Humanity for just one) don't love this country.

    Again the republicans are a bunch of self centered, greedy individuals who try to convince each other that they know it all.

    THEY BETTER GET WITH IT, before they really do disappear from the political scene.

    May 12, 2009 01:49 pm at 1:49 pm |
  12. mypitts2

    I agree with the Huckster: The listening tour is a joke. The party's a joke.

    May 12, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  13. Brian G, Sugar Land, TX

    When the Whig Party failed many of its members fled to the fledgling Republican Party.

    Must be true what they say about a leopard changing its spots.
    Once irrelevant, always irrelevant.

    May 12, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  14. Ralph Nader

    Huck makes me laugh. He's so funny. Like a big clown . . .

    May 12, 2009 01:50 pm at 1:50 pm |
  15. Eileen

    Yeah Huck, you're right, you've got a point, why listen to anybody...you're content with your 21% in the echo chamber, and so is the Democratic party who looks forward to a long prosperous future leading this country.

    May 12, 2009 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  16. suezq

    Mike Huckabee is doing a grave disservice to the Republican party by heckling the likes of Jeb Bush,& Mitt Romney. Jeb Bush & Mitt Romney should be applauded, not scorned, for their efforts to listen to the people – how else will the Republican party learn if they don't start to listen? And, by the way, going to the suburbs of D.C. is not as laughable as it seems at face value – since when does anyone on the Hill go into the city they that surrounds their ivory tower to speak with the people they supposedly serve?

    May 12, 2009 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  17. wikwox

    I'm with the Huckabuck: Keep on marching off that cliff Republicans and if possible get ultra conservative so even more people will love you. Above all don't let reality get in your way and always remember we're wrong and your always right.

    May 12, 2009 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  18. Jim, Burlington NC

    They think they need to reshape the "image" of the Republican Party – and that's the root of the problem.

    As long as the far right pundits and entertainers like Limbaugh, Hannity and Coltier call all the shots the Rebulicans are in for some really rough times.

    I don't particularly agree with Huckabee on political issues, but heres a guy who calls it the way it is and will be another Republican who makes sense thrown under the bus by the Right wingnuts in his own party.

    May 12, 2009 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  19. Tom Denver

    The populist Republican still begging for votes. That party is deep in the swamp without a paddle.

    May 12, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  20. JR

    And another nail into the GOP coffin, keep it up boys, between Limbaugh, Cheney, Gengrich, Huckabee, Steele and the other nitwits of the GOP, it's hard to tell which is more stupid.

    May 12, 2009 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  21. maf

    The GOP continuing to implode in spite of themselves. This continues to be hilarious! How many factions of the Republican party are there now?
    Divide and conquer. Doesn't make much sense when it's within the party. Should be a treat to watch them dig their way out of this mess.

    May 12, 2009 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  22. DavidE73

    Mike Huckabee is the most qualified man in America to be President. He has the intellect of Obama, and ten times the executive experience. Many of the ideas that Obama has adopted were first articulated by Huckabee when he was running in 2008. Obama would do well to implement every policy that Huckabee advocates.

    May 12, 2009 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  23. Kiwi Dynamo

    Mr. Huckabee – I live in the suburbs of DC. Why doesn't my opinion matter? Are we not REAL America? You, Palin and Perry really should secede somewhere so the 3 of you can fight it out to be president of your rural one-horse nation.

    May 12, 2009 01:54 pm at 1:54 pm |
  24. a southern progressive

    lol,,, huckabee was not the republican nominee because he himself admitted that he is not a fiscal conservative.. and we all know that the only reason he was any kind of contender was because of the radical right social conservatives... this is funny.

    May 12, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  25. I Am The Great and Not-So-Powerful Wizard of Rush

    "Conservative conviction" in October, 2008 would have led to a depression worse than the 30s. Doing nothing in the face of economic disaster was not an option, even among Monday morning right wing quarterbacks.
    Bush and the both parties in Congress failed to put in enough controls. Obama is doing a much better job.

    May 12, 2009 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
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