Huckabee fires back
March 3rd, 2011
09:02 AM ET
7 years ago

Huckabee fires back

(CNN) – Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee says that President Barack Obama has a "different world view" that was "molded out of a very different experience" because "most of us grew up going to boy scout meetings, and, you know, our communities were filled with rotary clubs, not madrassas."

The 2008 GOP presidential candidate, who's considering another run for the White House, made his comments Wednesday on talk radio host Bryan Fischer's program "Focal Point," on American Family Radio.

Huckabee used his appearance to fire back at critics, who blasted him for earlier this week confusing Indonesia, the country where Obama spent part of his youth, with Kenya. Saying that the problem with reporters may be that they "can't read," Huckabee admitted that he misspoke when characterizing President Obama's childhood in Kenya, and clarified his comments. "I said Kenya when I should have said Indonesia," he said.

Huckabee took as stand against what he called a "popular position with conservatives" and declared that "What I've never done is taken a position that Obama was born in Kenya or Indonesia, or anywhere other than Hawaii, where he was born."

When asked by Fischer to comment on the idea that there may be "some fundamental anti-Americanism in this president," Huckabee said of Obama, "that's exactly the point."

"I'm quoting a British newspaper…really we're expressing the outrage of the Brits for that bust being returned and the point was that they felt like…due to Obama's father and grandfather it could be that his version of and view about the Mau Mau revolution was very different than most of the people that perhaps would grow up in the United States.

"I have said many times, publicly, that I do think he has a different world view, and I think it's in part molded out of a very different experience. Most of us grew up going to boy scout meetings, and you know, our communities were filled with rotary clubs, not madrassas."

In the book "Dreams of my Father," Obama discusses the absence of his father during his childhood, when he was raised by his mother and his grandparents in Hawaii. Though Huckabee references "madrassas," a term used to refer to a Muslim school, Obama attended an international school while living in Indonesia, not a madrassa.

Filed under: Mike Huckabee
soundoff (282 Responses)
  1. The Other Dale

    Why in the world is Huckabee digging himself a bigger hole here? His "correction" to his comments smack of blind ignorance, religious hatred and – dare I even say it, as it'll get the Tea Partiers all in a twist? – racism. How can anyone take these comments and feel he is competent to lead? What a stupid thing for him to do.

    March 3, 2011 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  2. jaywingfuller

    Good god, someone on Huckaboy's election team needs to stick a sock in his mouth or sew his lips shut. The man is starting to look and sound like the Charlie Sheen of the GOP. Huckaboy, lay off the LSD, dude. You're obviously hallucinating. And, by the way, Huck, all us Americans didn't grow up in your little 1950's Leave It To Beaver world. Some of us actually see a very different America than you do. And by the venom you're spouting, I far prefer my America to yours.

    March 3, 2011 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  3. BeverlyNC

    Huckabee is an outright liar. He did not get anything "mixed up". He weaved a whole sick story of lies about Obama and Kenya and you don't find the African tribes part of his made-up story in Indonesia. President Obama was only in Indonesia for 4 years and he attended an INTERNATIONAL school and NOT a Muslim madrassa. President Obama grew up in a CHRISTIAN home in HAWAII – WHERE HE WAS BORN. Huckabee knows this but told this hateful lie to appeal to nutjob birthers he wants to support him in a run for President. No one with such poor character and no integrity should be elected President...and Huckabee was once a Baptist minister. Has he already forgotten NOT TO BEAR FALSE WITNESS???
    President Obama is an American Christian who was raised in a loving home, got an outstanding education at our top colleges, was a brilliant student at the top of his class and instead of going out into the corporate world to make millions, he chose a life of community service. He has accomplished amazing things for our country and our PEOPLE in two short years already. He has been credit for nothing he has done and nuts on FOX tell lies about him every day to appeal to their hate-filled uneducated viewers. President Obama is an outstanding leader and loves this country far more than any Republican who keeps wanting us to fail and the middle class to bear all the burdens. When Republicans promised to focus on jobs for the midterms I guess we did not know they meant KILLING JOBS with their irresponsible and failed budget plan they want to ram through.

    March 3, 2011 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  4. Huckleberry Flop

    As the uncouth fool from South Carolina said during the SOTU address a couple years back "You Lie!"
    Mike you are nothing more than a 2 bit hick who hides behind religion to espouse hatred. Bigoted thoughts and speech will not get you in The White House, no matter how much you try to portay yourself as a bible thumping boy scout. We see you for who you are: just another clown in a sad line of wannabes from the R ticket.
    Be very careful, too, treason is a serious offense. Tread lightly Huckleberry

    March 3, 2011 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  5. usualone

    This guy apparently is digging his own political grave unless others are so anti-Obama that they will believe any nonsense this guy talks about. President Obama is more in tune to what is happening in the world than Huckabee ever will be. I wonder what century Huckabee lives in? We do need a President who knows how the world community thinks. As one can see from the space shots the world is a very small place and it is important to strive for the countries to work together. Every day Huckabee says something more foolish, and uneducated, than the day before.

    March 3, 2011 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  6. Anonymous

    Actually, most of us do not grow up going to boy scout meetings. There are slightly more women than men in the US. I think perhaps Mr. Huckabee needs to expand his world view to include a more representative demographic of the US.

    March 3, 2011 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
  7. Taioseach

    I wasn't a boy scout you bigot so don't speak for me. And you, you sir are speaking from your experience in America as white and privileged. I was born here and I can guarantee you my view of America isn't the same as yours or that bigoted Tea Party.

    March 3, 2011 10:04 am at 10:04 am |
  8. apotropoxy

    "I said Kenya when I should have said Indonesia,"

    Ah... that should clear it up.

    Now explain why he thought the Mau-Mau Revolt took place in Indonesia and when the Brits made that archipelago an Empire territory, Mikey.

    March 3, 2011 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  9. Liz in Texas

    President Obama is the epitomy of the American Dream. Because he wasn't born into a middle class white family in the heartland doesn't make him any less American. Huckabee is acting anti-American with his pandering to the bottom for his own agenda and not America's.

    March 3, 2011 10:05 am at 10:05 am |
  10. Anonymous

    such a nice christian man

    March 3, 2011 10:09 am at 10:09 am |
  11. Eric in RTP

    Hackabee is a fool

    March 3, 2011 10:11 am at 10:11 am |
  12. FM

    GOP are in big trouble if they are considering this man as a front runner. He said and done awkward stuff in the past and we are going to hear more of this once the campaign heats up. Am afraid to say: Huckabee has no filter on what he lips out. This is a huge deficiency to anyone posed to be a leader!

    March 3, 2011 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  13. DENNA

    Maybe we needed a president with a 'different world view'. Our leaders are so mentally stale, I am amazed that this country even survives, much less thrives. I thought the Tea Party might have good ideas of how to move this country forward, but in the end all they had was a deep hatred of the black man that was duly elected by the majority of voters. The fact that he is more for the people than the corporations has been lost on the Tea Party and other conservatives who can't get past the fact that he is a Democrat and a black man. Yet the majority of the voters did not are about that. We looked to him with a sense of hope that he could pull America together, which he has tried to do despite the Republican party. Yes, we need a president with a different world view and the Republican party will never produce someone who thinks that originally.

    March 3, 2011 10:12 am at 10:12 am |
  14. Amunaka

    He knows what he said.. why he said it ..and who he was pandering too by saying it ...repubs are just plain revolting ...even the ones who think they flew in on angel wings....

    March 3, 2011 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  15. Doc Ray

    Huckabee is from Arkansas. There are probably more Klan chapters in AR than rotary clubs. I wonder if any of the reporters have the gall to bring this up to the Huckster.

    March 3, 2011 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  16. Eric

    He's a birther! Ha!

    That's what happens when you spend too much time at FNC studios; you actually start believing things made up to fool the foolish into voting Republican. Birtherism is a fringe 'conservative' talking point, one that moderates find distasteful. McCain knew that, you should've too.

    March 3, 2011 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  17. Emerson

    "fundamental anti-Americanism?" You have to get away from Fox, Huckahick. Your virulent xenophobia may be American to the core (or at least from the part of America where you were raised) but it is disgusting to hear and way out of step with the modern world. It is not 1950 and it will never be again, which is something the radical right cannot seem to deal with. Move ahead or gaet out of the way.

    March 3, 2011 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  18. Michael in Houston

    nice try Huckster.....your comments about the president were not you mispeaking but rather intentionally designed and delivered to fuel your mindless sponge bob square pants loonies on the right that the President is non-american and muslim. Your tactics and antics are juvenile and were it not for the fact that your party will buy any of your Limbaugh, Hannity, Beck, Palin, Gingrich, Bachman, O'donnell garbage you wouldnt stand a chance. You may win the repub nomination...but you will never see the WHite House pal.

    March 3, 2011 10:15 am at 10:15 am |
  19. vic nashville tn

    I don’t agree with president’s some policies. But when ever I hear anti-Americanism and he attend ‘madrassas’ my support lean towards Obama.

    Because they are disrespecting President’s mother and grand parents

    Huckabee doesn’t know kids feeling who grow up in single family home.

    Pastor doesn’t talk like this so some thing wrong with Huckabee

    March 3, 2011 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  20. annie s

    What absolute bull! He said Kenya when he meant Indonesia? Obama's father and grandfather lived in Indonesia? The Mau Mau uprising took place in Indonesia? His view of Britain is different because he lived in Indonesia? And how dare anyone say our President has anti-American views because he lived in another country for less than five years between the ages of 6 and 10? Mr. Huckabee, you have officially joined the ranks of the ignorant and bigoted.

    March 3, 2011 10:16 am at 10:16 am |
  21. Sniffit

    What's anti-American is the belief that Huckleberry and the rest of the GOP/Liptonite/conservative jackholes are trying to sell that there's one, and only one, right way to be an American. This is quite possibly the most disgusting load of nativist religiosity I've heard come out of Huckleberry's mouth yet.

    March 3, 2011 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  22. william

    So I guess Huckabee thinks that attending a fundamentalist religious education might somehow skew a person's world view to be different from the mainstream. Even though this is not true of Obama–he never attended a madrassa, even though Huckabee would like us to wonder about that... oh my goodness, because Obama is "different" in some ways, maybe he is a closet religious fundamentalist of some kind... Hmm, point taken.
    Ok, I wonder where Huckabee went to school...
    Lo and behold, first it was Ouachita Baptist University, and then Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary...

    March 3, 2011 10:17 am at 10:17 am |
  23. Jon

    What a disgusting piece of garbage this guy is.

    March 3, 2011 10:18 am at 10:18 am |
  24. Gregory

    Like so many of these Republicans, he needs to do his homework. This ain't Bible class Mike. This is the real world. The problem most of the GOPers have is they've never been anywhere or done anything or seen anything beyond their nome state. Many of them think NYC or Chicago is a foreign country. We all love America but he world is a heck of a lot bigger than Dogpatch.

    March 3, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
  25. woet

    I think Mr. Huckabee is saying that most Americans like himself, don't have the qualification to have a world view. without the knowledge of the others you are just assuming about their view and behavior. in this case president Obama's view about the world makes more sense than yours Mr. Huckabee.

    March 3, 2011 10:21 am at 10:21 am |
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