May 8th, 2008
08:19 AM ET
14 years ago

Huckabee: 'I got to give Hillary some credit'

CNN

Watch Huckabee's comments Thursday.

(CNN) - Former campaign underdog Mike Huckabee said Thursday that Democrat Hillary Clinton should ignore critics pressuring her to end her presidential run, telling CNN’s John Roberts that “she entered this thing to play to the finish line.”

“It’s easy to play horse race with this and say, ‘Gosh, she ought to drop out,’” he said on CNN’s American Morning. “She’s playing by the rules that the party set, just as I played by the rules that the Republican Party set.

“You know it’s frustrating to those of us who spend all of this time, effort and money - we get our supporters out there, we play by the rules that were handed and then somebody says, ‘It looks like the way this is gonna end is different than we want, so why don’t you go ahead and quit?’”

Huckabee faced pressure to end his own White House bid after it became mathematically impossible for him to become the Republican nominee. He stayed in the race several weeks longer, winning several contests, until John McCain captured the 1,191 delegates required to claim the GOP nomination.

On Thursday, Huckabee – who endorsed McCain, and recently launched his own political action committee – said public calls for an end to the Democratic contest were premature. “Now what if you did that in major league baseball, what if we did that in NFL football, once a team has got four or five touchdowns ahead we just said, ‘Look, it’s pretty inevitable here, the math doesn’t work, let’s end the game, so is that the way we ought to play it?’

“I got to give Hillary some credit that: yeah, it doesn’t look like she’s gonna get the nomination. But she entered this thing to play to the finish line - and I think that’s what she’s attempting to do.”


Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Mike Huckabee
soundoff (316 Responses)
  1. Yaung

    He is trying to justify for what he did in his own race. A BLACK MAN is becoming mostpopular and having a chance to become the PERSIDENT OF UNITED STATES, it is eating many people alive.

    May 8, 2008 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  2. Mike T

    Forcing someone to quit now and only have half of the support of the democratic Party is a terrible way to end a race. These supporters asking someone to unite around one person is no way to heal any type of divide and yes, it is Obama's fault too.

    May 8, 2008 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  3. Bob

    Hillary should stay in until the last primary as long as she 1) doesn't expect the DNC to bail her out financially and 2) stops with the negativity toward the Democratic nominee. She has an opportunity to repair her image and show her support for the party over the next few weeks – will she take it?

    May 8, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  4. Jane, College Park, Maryland

    Yes, Hillary should stay till the end, for 2 reasons:
    1. It's why she got in, its the principle.
    2. How else will she pay the debt she owes.

    Huckabee came out exactly one day after Mitt fine boy Romney because he also wants the VP position. Its all about positioning.

    The Dems do not need the Reps telling them what to do.

    May 8, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  5. lia

    Listen to them, Hillary! They are all your friends now.

    All the REpublicans want the race to continue... Do you have an idea WHY?

    May 8, 2008 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  6. steve

    RE: skeletons

    Vince Foster, Mike Brown . . . these are ACTUAL skeletons

    May 8, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  7. sacto joe

    As long as she mends her ways, then I think she should continue to run if that's her desire.

    But if she continues to rile up her Florida and Michigan supporters, as she is apparantly intent on doing, then she is doing a disservice to the Democratic party and, by extension, to the country. At that point she needs to be slapped down.

    I'd say the same of anyone, male, female, black, white, camel or dromidary, that did the same.

    May 8, 2008 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  8. Burrito

    I think he is talking about giving her a loan ... I think that is the credit that she really needs ...

    May 8, 2008 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  9. Gary S

    The song "The Gambler" comes to mind. Everyone knows that Clinton is out of aces and has a losing hand, so why doesn't she fold?

    May 8, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  10. Michael

    Huckbarack abee is right. Hillary Clinton has every right to remain in the race. Until Barack Obama hits that magic number, he's not the nominee. And if Sen. Obama can't handle the heat of Sen. Clinton, he has no chance against John McCain and the GOP.

    I think Obama said it right a few weeks ago, this race is making him stronger. So let the fight continue!

    May 8, 2008 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  11. Greg Pa

    I hope you dems keep fighting over this.You dems keep crying broke but somehow Obama received over $100,000,0 in funds .

    May 8, 2008 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  12. Wow.

    Funny how Huckabee is still trying to defend his idiotic crusade to stay in the race even after it was impossible for him to win. The man was never a contender and will never be one, why are we still listening to his commentary???

    May 8, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  13. kingsley

    nicely said HUKABOO ! you talk about rules and how it says that HILLARIOUS can stay on clowning until the finish line. but wait a minute, didnt the same rules say that if FL and MI move up their primary, they wont be recognised ? can some non prejudicial clear minded unracial someone out in HILLARIOUS land tell us what would then happen to the rest of the democratic presidential candidates who could equally have picked up delegates if they had not been equally denied their due. can they equally benefit from any split up of the delegates ?. Say the DNC split up the delegates 20 for hillarious, 20 for Obama, 15 for edwards, 10 for richardson etc and then allow the other candidates give up their delegates to any candidate of their choice. that would really be playing by the rules !

    May 8, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  14. Mike Lorain, OH

    Fred

    Got some sour grapes huh? Want some cheese to go with that Whine? You sound like Bush since if you're not with Hillary, you must be against her. McGovern has as much right to change his mind as you do with regards on who to support and that doesn't make him a 'traitor.'

    May 8, 2008 10:59 am at 10:59 am |
  15. Gary Chandler in Canada

    The reason I was rooting for the Huckabee, scrapping income tax, and using sales tax for governement revenue.
    You can't get rid of criminals, so make their purchases pay for health care. With missing taxes from the underground economy you could fix all the highways.

    May 8, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  16. Anna G.

    Hillary should not quit. Senator Obama has not yet reached the magic number.I believe that she is the best canditate.

    Go Hillary, you still have the support from so many of us.

    May 8, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  17. bigben

    Clinton supporters. She was robed of MI and FL and the momentum they
    would have brought. Lets riot in Denver. Just like the obama people have said they would so many times.

    May 8, 2008 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  18. Shawn Smith, Kansas City, MO

    it's sad to think that we may have lost our chance to see living history. in my lifetime, i thought maybe i would see the first woman president. there are many charismatic african americans out there with the diligence to run this country, but the former first lady, and one of the most influential lawyers in America, can’t run across too many of those. It’s a sad time for America when we may have lost our only chance to bring women to the table for equality. i mean, barack is 48, she is 60, even if he does screw it up in his first term, she will be 64 by the time she is able to run. he can come back at 52, let her turn this country around and let him get some stag in congress, she had to get her years in just like everyone before her.

    god bless you hillary, may your relentlessness, courage, and wisdom be an insignia for inspiration for women across the nation.

    god bless you hillary, may your relentnes

    May 8, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  19. SS

    Limbaugh needs to get back on his meds...

    May 8, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  20. Petition for Barack

    I would like to see Barack's campaign start up petitions for Michigan voters to sign:

    Petition 1: I voted for Hillary because Barack was NOT on the ballot. Michigan residents were told this was a "beauty contest" that wouldn't count. Since you are trying to make it count now, please recognize my voice as a vote for Barack Obama.

    Petition 2: I voted UNDECIDED because Barack was NOT on the ballot. Michigan residents were told this was a "beauty contest" that wouldn't count. Since you are trying to make it count now, please recognize my voice as a vote for Barack Obama.

    Petition 3: I am placing my vote for Barack Obama now because after I was told by the DNC that the Michigan primary would not count, I choose to withhold my vote. Since you are trying to make it count now, please recognize my voice as a vote for Barack Obama.

    May 8, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  21. David

    I am an Obama supporter, but I fully understand Hillary's situation and agree with others that she has every right to stay in the race. However, it's not about staying in the race. It's about her conduct while she's in the race. And given that Obama is ahead of her and has an excellent chance of winning, she needs to tone down her language against him so she's not hurting the party's chances in November. As Huck says, we started this with certain rules. She's entitled to stay in the race. At the same time, she wants us to turn a blind eye to the rules by seating delegates who were chosen unfairly when Michigan and Florida knowingly broke the rules and moved up their primaries. You can't have it both ways. We all want the delegates seated somehow... but it's just not fair to seat delegates when Obama didn't even campaign in Florida or Michigan... and his name wasn't even on the ballot in Michigan. It's not like we had fair primaries in those states. Any six year old would understand. A lot of efforts were made to find solutions and Hillary's campaign seems to think it's okay to point the finger at Obama as the roadblock. That's not the case. His side has tried to work toward solutions. It's just not an easy fix.

    May 8, 2008 11:01 am at 11:01 am |
  22. Miss Elaine

    Why has the press "black holed" Hillary Clinton? Every story that could be about her, ends up being about Obama. Why is this? Wake up people, the press is channeling your opinion towards their candidate, not necessarily yours. If you really want to know who you should vote for, don't pander to "press opinion." Go to the candidates' sites and read what they have to say, find out for yourself what their platforms are. And CNN is the worst. They don‘t even try to tell the truth. In their story of Hillary‘s "…overwhelming defeat in North Carolina and a narrow victory in Indiana, Sen. Hillary Clinton vowed to stay in the race until her party has a nominee." There were only 7% points difference in their wins. Hillary won by 7% in Indiana and Obama won by 14% points. This isn't a landslide in anyone’s political book. Please people, think. We are better than this, we aren’t living in trees anymore, WE HAVE EVOLVED! Hillary is in this to win.

    May 8, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  23. Shawn Smith, Kansas City, MO

    it's sad to think that we may have lost our chance to see living history. in my lifetime, i thought maybe i would see the first woman president. there are many charismatic african americans out there with the diligence to run this country, but the former first lady, and one of the most influential lawyers in America, can’t run across too many of those. It’s a sad time for America when we may have lost our only chance to bring women to the table for equality. i mean, barack is 48, she is 60, even if he does screw it up in his first term, she will be 64 by the time she is able to run. he can come back at 52, let her turn this country around and let him get some stag in congress, she had to get her years in just like everyone before her.

    god bless you hillary, may your relentlessness, courage, and wisdom be an insignia for inspiration for women across the nation.

    May 8, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  24. JJ

    Newsflash Huckster: She is not playing by the rules, she is attempting to set her own set of rules! If she was trully planning on playing by the rules she would have realized she could not win a long time ago.

    May 8, 2008 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  25. Brian from Fort Mill, S.C.

    Barack Obama's new theme song is "Another one bites the dust."

    Hillary Clinton's new theme song is "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going."

    May 8, 2008 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13