June 11th, 2010
03:11 PM ET
5 years ago

Huckabee takes aim at Daniels' comments

Mike Huckabee (right) is slamming Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (left) over his recent comments suggesting the next president should focus exclusively on fiscal problems at the expense of social issues.
Mike Huckabee (right) is slamming Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels (left) over his recent comments suggesting the next president should focus exclusively on fiscal problems at the expense of social issues.

(CNN) - In what could be an early preview of the 2012 race for the GOP presidential nomination, Mike Huckabee is slamming Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels over his recent comments suggesting the next president should focus exclusively on fiscal problems at the expense of social issues.

"Let me be clear…the issue of life and traditional marriage are not bargaining chips nor are they political issues," the former Arkansas governor and 2008 Republican presidential candidate said in an e-mail to supporters Friday. "They are moral issues. I didn't get involved in politics just to lower taxes and deficit spending though I believe in both and have done it as a Governor. But I want to stay true to the basic premises of our civilization."

Daniels' comments came in an interview with the Weekly Standard, during which the Indiana Republican said the next president "would have to call a truce on the so-called social issues" so he or she could focus on the fiscal problems facing the country.

The comments have riled several prominent social conservatives, including Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, who called them "astonishing."

Daniels, the popular Indiana governor and former OMB head under President George W. Bush, is widely considered to be a potential presidential candidate.

In his e-mail Friday, Huckabee said Daniel's sentiment was "heartbreaking."

"For those of us who have labored long and hard in the fight to educate the Democrats, voters, the media and even some Republicans on the importance of strong families, traditional marriage and life to our society, this is absolutely heartbreaking. And that one of our Republican 'leaders' would suggest this truce, even more so," he wrote.

But Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, another potential 2012 presidential contender, was more tepid in his response to the criticisms, telling CNN's John King, "I wouldn't characterize it the way Mitch did. "

"I would say what makes it about - what makes campaigns about the issues are what are the issues on people's minds. And right now, you're right, it's not the social issues that are on people's minds.," Barbour said in an interview airing Friday on John King, USA.


Filed under: 2012 • Indiana • Mike Huckabee • Mitch Daniels
soundoff (46 Responses)
  1. Paul in GA

    He is right Mitch. Stay out of my bedroom you pervert.

    June 11, 2010 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  2. DanInNooYawk

    Daniels is right.
    I'm amazed that the Republican right is still trying to turn back the clock to pre- Roe v. Wade, pre-1967, pre-Woodstock, pre-New Deal, pre-sufferage for women, pre-Darwin. However, they seem to have accepted heliocentrism and germ theory so I guess we've made progress. I may change my mind after they burn me at the stake.

    June 11, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  3. Amunaka

    What is it exactly that the "Family Research Council,.." do for families anyway...and what research is necessary for families that they need to have a council to do it..

    June 11, 2010 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  4. Wendy P

    The Huckabee's and the Perkin's are clueless. Their so-called "traditional marriage" is a failure! They are White males who want to keep womenout of the boardrooms and into the bedrooms!They spew homophobic hatred and are ignorant to the fact that gay rights are NOT about social issues, gay rights are about HUMAN, CIVIL RIGHTS! I really hate when politicians speak about matter they know NOTHING about!

    June 11, 2010 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  5. Matt

    I am a democrat that would vote for any republican that takes Daniel's stance. What always turned me off from Republicans is the tie between church and state. Set aside the useless bickering on abortion, marriage, religion etc and focus on the thing that matters to YOU and has nothing to do with OTHER PEOPLE'S CHOICES – YOUR WALLET!!!!!

    June 11, 2010 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  6. Jon

    Huckabee is more interested in issues such as releasing convicted murderers before the end of their terms so they can kill police officers. This man is a joke.

    June 11, 2010 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  7. D. Bunker

    Here's an idea: How about anyone in the GOP start coming up with useful ideas that don't involve stupid things like tax cuts for the rich and deregulation?

    June 11, 2010 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  8. bobcat1a

    Presidents should be interested only in legal issues and their own morality and leave other people's morality to themselves and their god.

    June 11, 2010 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  9. Lynda/Minnesota

    Let me be clear, Huckabee. The entire world economy is in danger of total collapse, including the cost of cleaning up the gushing oil - all of it courtesy of GWB and conservative policy making.

    I rather doubt traditional marriage or pro-choice morals are going to fix it anytime soon.

    We are facing real issues right now that are impacting everyone, not just the few. We need leadership from both parties, not a lesson in moral ethics.

    Either get a clue, help work on real solutions, or step aside.

    June 11, 2010 04:11 pm at 4:11 pm |
  10. GL

    For those of us who have labored long and hard in the fight to educate the Democrats, voters, the media and even some Republicans on the importance of strong families, traditional marriage and life to our society, this is absolutely heartbreaking. And that one of our Republican 'leaders' would suggest this truce, even more so," he wrote.
    -----------------------------------–
    How and the world can Republicans teach anybody on Traditional marriage when they are the ones LEADING with the most Affairs. Republican at it any being HYPOCRITES!

    June 11, 2010 04:12 pm at 4:12 pm |
  11. Harry Baxter

    Why are these two guys taking shots at each other? Neither has a shot at the nomination. Huckleberry is an Arkansas goober, and nobody knows who Daniels is, even though, unlike Romney, he's a principled conservative.

    June 11, 2010 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  12. NVa Native

    "would have to call a truce on the so-called social issues" .... so what would the repubs do without their dependable ploy to keep their base controlled by fear and loathing??
    This guy needs to be tea-baggered, he sounds like a socialist.

    June 11, 2010 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  13. GL

    But Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, another potential 2012 presidential contender, was more tepid in his response to the criticisms, telling CNN's John King, "I wouldn't characterize it the way Mitch did. "
    --------------------------------------
    THIS FAT RACIST PIG will give President Obama a second term for sure just like Sara Palin will. He is worst then Sara Pallin. President Obama will beat the brakes off this fat racist pig that would be glad to send this country back to the 50ies where things were so much better for the WHITE RACE! Republicans are the only ones that would love to go back to the way things was in the 50ies becasue their white race was the only race living LARGE and running things!

    June 11, 2010 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  14. REG in AZ

    You want to fault the Democrats? Fine I will join you as they are really far from pure and holy and anyone who has read my posts should realize I have no blind bias toward them. As long as you are honest and hold the Republicans to the same measure and then recognize who has literally failed and will fail to represent the people, who has been grossly dishonest and has literally cost us the most, then I have no problem with it. It would be nice to have a strong third party that sincerely represented the majority, or even two parties that cooperated and through bipartisanship fine tuned and adjusted everything, that is what we are suppose to have, but we don’t have anything like that. My only point is that with what we actually have as our only real choices, for the best interests of the people, the Democrats just work out to be the current best choice (not perfect by any stretch of imagination).

    The Republicans cry and whine about everything, even use clichés about the ‘constitution’, and act arrogant and bold but when all is said and done the Republicans literally have no answers, no solutions … absolutely nada … nothing. Oh they infer a lot by faulting everything as if they have a direction but there is nothing real, only to return to ‘more of the same’ that got us the problems. Obama didn’t cause the problems, he inherited them and his actions, while they are necessarily taking time, they are more honest, responsible and conscientious then anything we ever saw from Bush-Cheney or the Republicans. The Republicans have literally put their political ambitions above all else and fault and obstruct all efforts, hoping to discredit Obama, and they irresponsibly refuse to participate in bipartisan cooperation to fine tune and adjust anything. They are even continuing to perform as ‘puppets’ for oil companies and recently sought to repeal an environmental bill Obama signed. If they are successful with all of their constant barrage of subterfuge, as seen from the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Sarah Palin, the politicians, others and even here from bloggers, and do ultimately deceive and manipulate the voters, we can then just expect to once again experience the catastrophe of ‘more of the same’. Simply stated, if we are susceptible to their BS then we will just have more of it.

    June 11, 2010 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  15. Sniffit

    "the issue of life and traditional marriage are not bargaining chips nor are they political issues...They are moral issues. I didn't get involved in politics just to lower taxes and deficit spending though I believe in both and have done it as a Governor. But I want to stay true to the basic premises of our civilization."

    Translation: "I got into politics to enforce my moral code upon others."

    June 11, 2010 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  16. GL

    In 2012, the American people will not select anybody that would take this country back to the GOOD old WHITE PEOPLE ONLY days.

    So bottom line, I don't see any of the Republicans winning back the white house anytime soon exspecial not in 2012 WITH THEIR 1950 WHITE PEOPLE ON VIEWS!

    June 11, 2010 04:20 pm at 4:20 pm |
  17. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Huckabee you picked the fight so "man up" and stand on your own two flat feet and leave the Democrats out of it. Better yet go back to the pulpit and minister to the people instead of being part of the cesspool of politics.

    June 11, 2010 04:28 pm at 4:28 pm |
  18. Mike in NYC

    Yeah, ignore the social issues. We can live with degeneracy, as long as the books are balanced.

    June 11, 2010 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  19. Joe

    Daniels is right. If the3 GOP would give up its anti choice anti gay positions there would be no eason to vote for a Democrat.

    June 11, 2010 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  20. Kirk

    I am not sure that Mitch Daniels will even carry his own state. I live in Indiana and in a very conservative north central county. He is not the most popular guy around. His idea to privatize everything possible from family and social services to schools has be a huge failure. He makes the numbers look good, but at the cost to our society has been huge! Unfortunately, if this man becomes President the whole country will suffer.

    June 11, 2010 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  21. Sniffit

    "For those of us who have labored long and hard in the fight to educate the Democrats, voters, the media and even some Republicans on the importance of strong families, traditional marriage and life to our society, this is absolutely heartbreaking. And that one of our Republican 'leaders' would suggest this truce, even more so,"

    Translation: "For those of us who who have self-declared our moral superiority over Democrats, voters, the media and even some Republicans with respect to families, traditional marriage and life in our society, this is absolutely heartbreaking. And that one of our Republican 'leaders' would suddenly grow a brain, even more so,"

    June 11, 2010 04:38 pm at 4:38 pm |
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