June 18th, 2008
12:00 PM ET
12 years ago

Huckabee: Demonizing Obama is a ‘fatal mistake’

Mike Huckabee delivers a speech at Foreign Correspondents' Club in Tokyo.

Mike Huckabee delivers a speech at Foreign Correspondents' Club in Tokyo.

(CNN) – Former GOP presidential contender Mike Huckabee called Barack Obama's candidacy "a landmark achievement" Tuesday, and warned fellow Republicans not to demonize Obama.

"Republicans will make a fundamental if not fatal mistake if they seek to win the election by demonizing Barack Obama," Huckabee told reporters in Tokyo, according to a report by Agence France-Presse.

Huckabee praised the country for getting "to a point where we did not see his color but we truly saw his charisma, his message and what he brought to the campaign trail."

"When people are really hurting - and they are right now - they're not looking at a person's race," he added.

Huckabee said he hopes John McCain beats Obama, but that Republicans should focus on policy differences, not race.

Huckabee suggested questions about whether he might join McCain on the ticket were premature. "You can't accept an invitation to the prom until the football captain asks you. So I'm not going to go out and buy the outfit just yet," said Huckabee, according to AFP.


Filed under: Mike Huckabee • Popular Posts
soundoff (221 Responses)
  1. Loretta from California

    Ha!! Too late, the damage has already been done. Too late for the GOP to clean up this mess. You have already made his race an issue , and have already convinced me that your party has a very low opinion of African Americans.

    June 18, 2008 09:03 am at 9:03 am |
  2. blaising

    I've always said Obama is a great candidate who just happens to be a man of color.

    The color discussion is for mouth-breathers only...and I don't want those idiots in charge of the future of the United States of America!!

    June 18, 2008 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  3. Laura

    I have to say, even though I am a diehard Democrat, I kind of like Mike Huckabee. I don't think I could ever vote for him because I fundamentally disagree with him on too many issues, but he seems like a decent person and I respect him. Kind of like how I used to feel abotu John McCain, before he wrapped his arms around Bush and sold out to the far right.

    June 18, 2008 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  4. Blayze Kohime

    For all I disagree with his policy opinions, Huckabee has shown subtle wisdom in this campaign.
    It won't help though. McCain's followers seem to be completely nuts. They haven't and won't listen to him when he tells them that he wants to run a dignified race and they will do much to harm him.

    June 18, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  5. sue calgary

    I agree with Huck! Look beyond the race, do the math, look at the current status, look at your options and then choose carefully!! OBAMA is what America needs right now for itself and for it's image in the world. Same old, same old is not working and has not worked! Don't be afraid to vote for change and for something different. The TIME for something different is NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    If you choose the other option, well what can I say "you get what you pay for".................................................

    June 18, 2008 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  6. Seth in Jacksonville, FL

    To ALL Democrats – moderate or liberal, educated or uneducated, men or women, straight or gay, black, brown, or white, urban or rural, Clinton supporters or Obama supporters, and those in between:

    Please recognize the importance of putting Obama in the White House and keeping McCain out of it. McCain does not share for many of the values and ideas we Democrats have. This is hugely important on so many levels.

    These blogs are filled with phony comments from individuals who just want to divide and weaken our party. The PUMA people do exist, but they are far and few in between. They do not represent the true Democratic Party. We can see through this nasty taunting and baiting and come together this fall. I believe in us!

    June 18, 2008 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  7. Eric

    "When people are really hurting — and they are right now — they're not looking at a person's race"

    Until then, he had made a good job trying to look like a decent human being. And then, this idea flies, that if it were not for the US misery created by 8 years of GOP, people might not go for the black candidate and would stick with the white man with the confused mind and the constant flip-flop, just for the comfort of it.

    June 18, 2008 09:08 am at 9:08 am |
  8. Uncle Sam

    I look forward to the day when a qualified African-American candidate runs for the presidency. In the meantime, I will vote for John McCain.

    June 18, 2008 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  9. Suzanne

    Praise God somebody finally speaks the truth......let's stick to the policies and not race.

    June 18, 2008 09:09 am at 9:09 am |
  10. Patrick

    That was not something i expected to read. Then again though, I like Huckabee more than McCain. At least Mike gets it, sad to say many of his fellow republicans dont.

    June 18, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  11. Nikki

    This is a well thought out comment as opposed to the horrible joke he made at the NRA conference.

    June 18, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  12. Nsikan

    We all get wiser when we are abroad. Once you were blind but now you can see Mike. Hope others are paying attention.

    June 18, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  13. Wisdom Agahama

    What a wise counsel from a wise man!

    June 18, 2008 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  14. Donald

    Please go away press/camara hog, please.

    June 18, 2008 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  15. Ben

    Huckabee would have been a much better presidential candidate for the republicahn party. Who can not like this guy?

    June 18, 2008 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  16. Mark, Philadelpiha

    Way to go Mike! I just gained some respect back for you.

    June 18, 2008 09:13 am at 9:13 am |
  17. Saad from NJ

    I really like this guy. I think he is sincere towards the good of the people and our country.

    June 18, 2008 09:14 am at 9:14 am |
  18. BAT Man

    I like Huckabee

    nuff said

    June 18, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  19. Ed, Santa Fe NM

    McBush doesn't have a chance.....

    June 18, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  20. Obama '08

    I want Huckabee VP for Obama

    June 18, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  21. FactCheck

    They can't help themselves, they are Republicans. The only thing they are good at is knocking the other guy down and soon, they will be history.

    June 18, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  22. aurora

    You know – this guy may pal around with Chuck Norris, but he's obviously got some sense.

    I disagree with all his policy positions, find his personal views on social issues offensive, but I give him credit for being a decent human being.

    June 18, 2008 09:16 am at 9:16 am |
  23. Phil, FL

    Pretty smart guy on this issue.

    But the repubs are the repubs, and they will play dirty to keep the WH.

    June 18, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  24. Deborah in Houston

    Surprising to hear this sober advice from Huckaby, especially in light of his catastrophic attempt at humor, when he joked about Barrack having to take cover from gunfire. I guess better late than never.

    June 18, 2008 09:17 am at 9:17 am |
  25. Gatsby

    Wow, the first thing Huckabee (or any Republican for that matter) has ever said that impressed me.

    June 18, 2008 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
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