November 18th, 2007
12:54 PM ET
13 years ago

Huckabee: I am only true conservative in race

Mike Huckabee maintains he is the true conservative in the GOP race.

(CNN)–Following a week when a leading pro-life organization endorsed his competitor, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee insisted he is the only true conservative in the GOP race for the White House.

"Well, I've never switched my positions, for one thing. I have a record that doesn't just talk about what I said I was for," Huckabee said in an interview on 'FOX News Sunday' reacting to the National Right to Life Committee's endorsement this week of former Tennessee senator Fred Thompson. "Fred's never had a 100 percent record on right to life in his
Senate career. The records reflect that. And he doesn't support the human life amendment which is most amazing because that's been a part of the Republican platform since 1980."

Thompson also hit the airwaves on Sunday and burnished his own conservative credentials on the abortion issue.

"All I know is that I've had a pro-life voting record my entire career on every conceivable issue that came up before us for almost a decade," Thomspon said on ABC's 'This Week.' "I have said that nothing would pass my desk that would promote or finance or fund abortion without my veto. But you've got to be within the realm of whatever the law is at the time. And if you don't think the law is correct, the best thing that a president can do is try to get judges who will follow the law and follow the Constitution instead of making it up as they go along."

Huckabee also disagreed with the notion that the endorsement raised doubts about his own electability. "My numbers are far better than his, especially in Iowa. So I think I'm pretty doggone electable." Recent polls have shown Huckabee on the rise in Iowa.

Huckabee also sought to draw a sharp contrast with Thompson, and fellow GOP hopeful, Sen. John McCain, R-Arizona, over Thompson's and McCain's talks of leaving the issues of abortion and gay rights up to individual states to decide.

"If morality is the point here, and if it's right or wrong, not just a political question, then you can't have 50 different versions of what's right and what's wrong," Huckabee said. "But for those of us for whom this is a moral question, you can't simply have 50 different versions of what's right."

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Filed under: Fred Thompson • Iowa • Mike Huckabee • Race to '08
soundoff (66 Responses)
  1. Nat, Brooklyn, NY

    He is pro-illegal immigration. For me it is no, no, no for Mr. Huckabee. We don't need another preacher in the White House.

    November 18, 2007 03:19 pm at 3:19 pm |
  2. Jonathan Hattiesburg, MS

    Of the Republican hopefuls, Huckabee has my vote. The other candidates are pompous windbags. Huckabee seems like an honest, down-to-earth, and above all- likable guy.

    November 18, 2007 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  3. brinn, ames ia

    Man, I don't think I can come to the ticker anymore. Reading these vicious comments about people (not just Huckabee) makes me depressed about the state of the level of thinking in this country. Come on people! You can disagree with someone without calling them names and saying blatant lies.

    November 18, 2007 03:22 pm at 3:22 pm |
  4. Brad, from the great state of Texas

    Don, you said" I'm so sick of Christians imposing their values on this culture."

    Sir, I think you've got it backwards. We Christians have always made up the majority of the population, and yet in the last few decades we have seen liberals and secularists assault the Judeo-Christian values that made this nation great. While most of us quietly live our lives RESPONSIBLY, the courts have been legislating changes that would have embarrassed our founding fathers. Issues such as abortion rights, gay marriage, and the removal of God from our institutions were shoved down OUR throats, thank you very much. And guess what's next on the list– Christmas, which you guys have already began to chip away at by trying to ban nativity scenes and other displays across the country in the name of political correctness. So next time think before you start demonizing others, Don, because Christians aren't oppressing you!

    November 18, 2007 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  5. Holly, Austin TX

    He's the only true conservative? Ha. Check out Ron Paul's voting record, and there you'll find someone who knows what a conservative is. In 10 terms in the House, Ron Paul has never voted for an unbalanced budget! That's amazing, people. Check out to find out more about the guy.

    November 18, 2007 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  6. AJ, IL

    I'm not a Republican, but on the Republican side I respect Huckabee the most out of the Republican candidates. I wonder how a straw poll would rank Hillary vs Huckabee?

    November 18, 2007 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  7. Dave, Hilo HI

    "Pretty doggone electable?" Those aren't exactly inspiring or convincing words, Huck.

    November 18, 2007 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  8. David, Oregon City, Oregon

    Is Huckabee a fiscal conservative? Comparative to who or what? Are the talking points of Huckabee’s opposition found here?

    Have you asked any long haul truck drivers how they enjoyed bypassing Arkansas in the 90s due to the horrible road conditions that Governor Huckabee inherited from the prior tax and spenders?

    Have you asked any Arkansas families of nursing home residents how their living conditions and care was before Huckabee received another mandate and fix the problem, after inherited the problems from the prior tax and spenders?

    Bill Clinton used his Arkansas record to get elected President and who checked out his facts. Mike Huckabee actually has a good record cleaning up the problem from the prior abuses of the tax and spenders but it is considered not a conservative record. Please!

    November 18, 2007 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  9. Don Alexander Carson City Nevada

    If either Huckabee or Ron Paul get the nomination we might as well hand over the keys to the White House to Hillary. Paul is running on the wrong ticket, he is not a Republican he is a Libertarian. He is also one of five Congressmen who voted not to impeach Clinton.

    If you want high risk sex offenders and Illegal immigrants to roam the street vote for Huckabee.

    I haven't picked a candidate to support yet but I am thinking it will either be Duncan Hunter or Tom Tancredo. Both have solid stances and would do an excellent job.

    Also Duncan Hunter has a petition on his website to get the Border Fence built that both Democratic and Republican Congressman voted for and passed with almost a unanomous support and the President signed into law. You can sign the petition at and I hope everyone signs it and learns more about the former war hero, current Congressman and Presidential hopeful.

    November 18, 2007 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  10. Chris, Pensacola FL

    You probably are the most conservative and I admire you for your values. However, it doesn't make you a republican or the right choice. We don't have time for conservative or liberals these days. We need visionaries. We need forefathers. We need leadership from revolutionary backgrounds. What kind of "executive" leadership did Washington, Adams, Jefferson, Lincoln have? The time has come to smack down the sleeping citizens and elect and revolutionary candidate. If we don't, nothing else matters as we'll be living like those in the Balkans.

    November 18, 2007 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  11. Max, Boston, MA

    To be very honest, Ron Paul is the only "true conservative" in the race.

    A true conservative is against large government, and for being fiscally responsible. Strictly speaking, Huckabee doesn't represent either foundation.

    November 18, 2007 05:21 pm at 5:21 pm |
  12. Chris, C/S, CO

    The Huckster is really starting to tick me off. He seemed OK at first but, then I read these;

    The Dark Side of Mike Huckabee


    Now, he's telling us his "moral" principles are more important to him than the instructions our founding fathers clearly outlined for our continued freedom. He must surely believe he's smarter than they were...not hardly.

    Now with his new television ad with Chuck Norris he's yucking it up but, I've heard it's more than an might be a movie trailer for one of Chuck's older movies, "The Hero and The Terror"....Of course, more likely it's for the third sequel of Top Dog. I wonder if they make dogsuits in the Huckster's size??

    November 18, 2007 05:24 pm at 5:24 pm |
  13. Jeff, Columbus Ohio Big govt, and Pro War.

    We need a change from Bush, not the same thing.

    November 18, 2007 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  14. Tricia M Charlottetown PEI

    On the issue of Abortion I do not feel there is any one cut and dried answer. There is too much gray matter surrounding this issue in my view for any citizen, Government Official or Candidate to adopt a for or against stand. Every situation has it's unique set of circumstances.

    If Government can dictate Abortion Laws to it's people than maybe it won't be long until Government will have the right to tell it's citizens how many children they can lawfully produce.

    November 18, 2007 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  15. Marko Dezdri, Portland, Or

    Huckabee looks an awful lot like Richard Nixon. Place to pictures next to the other, one from richard Nixon and one from Huckabee. Anyone else agrees?
    He's going nowhere near the white house.

    November 18, 2007 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  16. Maeve

    Some starry-eyed repub. here earlier said Huckabee is "Reagan-esque."

    Whoa Nelly! I think that might be an insult!

    I've been reading some articles lately about the basic racist aspect of the Republican party and, in particular, about Reagan's racist tendencies.

    Didn't Reagan go out of his way to announce his candidacy for president in the same tiny Mississippi town where those young civil rights workers were murdered? And while there, didn't he call for more "state's rights," a term Reagan's toady, Atwater later admitted was code for "lasting segration"?

    Why would anyone want to claim the guy they like for president in 2008 is anything even vaguely resembling a racist Reagan...unless, of course, he was trying to slam ol' Mike?

    November 18, 2007 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  17. Henry Lorenzo, Hope Arkansas

    Mike Huckabee is a truly decent man that looks past political affiliation to do whats right. His battle with obesity and subsequent loss of over 100 pounds, his membership in a rock band, his strong focus on education and the arts, all certainly contribute to the excitement surrounding the governor's campaign. His governorship was one that brought Independents, Democrats, and Republicans together in Arkansas. His principles have not wavered and he will never sacrifice his beliefs for the sake of political expediency. I am an independent voter, and governor Huckabee has earned my respect.

    November 18, 2007 06:29 pm at 6:29 pm |
  18. MC- Atlanta,GA

    Conservative = Closed minded. Period.

    November 18, 2007 06:44 pm at 6:44 pm |
  19. Faiza, Los Angeles, CA

    Huckabee: I am only true conservative in race

    That means he is the craziest out of all of them, we really don't need that for the state the nation is in right now.

    November 18, 2007 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  20. Lorenz, Queens, NY

    Lets change that title to "I am the only religious fanatic"

    November 18, 2007 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  21. Ron Nebraska

    'Conservative values' that's like the same as ' jumbo shrimp' isn't it?
    Oh, and I was just wondering how many children born into unfortunate circumstances the Huckabees have adopted?

    November 18, 2007 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  22. jw, canadian,ok

    C'mon people, stop calling Ron Paul a Conservative, The man is a Libertarian (ya might wanna Wikpedia da word – scary).

    November 18, 2007 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
  23. Alice Newman Center Harbor NH

    "honest, down-to-earth, and above all- likable guy."... add in "conservative" and isn't that what the GOP said about Baby Bush 7 years ago ... I would rather respect than like my President ... I don't vote for someone I "can sit down and have a beer with"

    November 18, 2007 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  24. Anon, Philadelphia, PA

    Brad from Texas, I find your views hypocritical.

    If you proclaim to live your life quietly, then why not let homosexuals live in the same manner by giving them the same rights as you? The bottom line is that any human being, heterosexual or homosexual, should live their lives in peace. No one is trying to get you to become gay.

    I am not a Christian, but I do not believe that society would ever allow (nor would I personally want to see) the taking down of Christmas decorations and nativity scenes. As long as Jews are allowed to put menorahs on their window sills, Muslims allowed to pray in peace, and Christians allowed to display nativity scenes, then I think all religious freedom is being granted to all who desire it.

    I think the abortion issue is very iffy. America is split 50/50. You have a valid point there, but I think we all should try to look for ways to reduce abortions and promote adoption instead of the potential of having back-alley abortions.

    Aside from the abortion issue, you're only commenting because you're afraid.

    Don't be. America will be just fine.

    November 18, 2007 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  25. Val Davydov, Agawam, MA

    A true Conservative? – Dunno if I'd want that label, kinda sounds like a 24% approval.

    Posted By jw, canadian,ok : November 18, 2007

    Typical Democrat, jw, go with the flow. In other words – no backbone.

    November 18, 2007 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
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