Huckabee puts chances of a 2016 run at 50-50, wades into 'Duck Dynasty' controversy
December 22nd, 2013
01:51 PM ET
9 years ago

Huckabee puts chances of a 2016 run at 50-50, wades into 'Duck Dynasty' controversy

(CNN) – Former Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee said Sunday there's about a 50-50 chance he'll run for president again in 2016.

The former Arkansas governor said he would make a final decision after next year's midterm elections.

"I would say maybe at this point it is 50-50. I don't know. I don't know that I can put a percentage on it," Huckabee said on "Fox News Sunday."

"It would be a decision of the heart," he said "I've tried to be honest in all my evaluations, not only back in 2011, but even now, so when people ask me, ’Are you open to the possibilities?’ the honest answer is yes."

The 2008 presidential candidate opted out of running this past presidential cycle but in recent interviews has left the door open to another bid for the White House.

In recent weeks, Huckabee has met with groups from the politically important early voting states of Iowa and South Carolina. He told the Washington Post that groups he hadn't received support from in the past are encouraging him to launch another campaign, though Sunday he denied intentionally planting ideas of a future presidential run.

Mulling 2016 bid, Huckabee meets Iowa and S.C. groups

Huckabee, a pastor, also weighed in on controversial comments by “Duck Dynasty” TV star Phil Robertson in an interview with GQ magazine about same-sex marriage, saying that homosexuality is as much of a sin as lust.

"I think it's come to a point in our culture where political correctness has made it so if you want to take a point of view that is traditional, that holds to a steadfast, old-fashioned biblical, Christian values - which are also, by the way, values of traditional Judaism and even Islam - and somehow you're just supposed to shut up and keep that to yourself," he said, noting President Barack Obama's changed in position on the issue.

Huckabee pointed to a "new level of bullying on the part of these militant activist groups,” as reason for Robertson's suspension by A&E, referring to groups like the Human Rights Campaign, which urged the network to suspend the star.

But Huckabee conceded that Robertson's comments would have been "more appropriate for the duck woods than it would be for the pages of a major news magazine."

CNN Political Editor Paul Steinhauser contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2016 • Mike Huckabee
soundoff (118 Responses)
  1. Jeremy

    I live in Arkansas, and i'm for Huckabee running. Maybe if we get a GOP in there, and knock out all of those Dumb-o-crats, we can be Obamacare repealed and thrown out!

    December 22, 2013 05:13 pm at 5:13 pm |
  2. GOP = Greed Over People

    Was it the Huckster that wanted a more religious Constitution in '08?

    Yeah, go with that, that should be a GOP winner in '16!

    December 22, 2013 05:14 pm at 5:14 pm |
  3. Sal

    He doesn't stand a chance.......

    December 22, 2013 05:16 pm at 5:16 pm |
  4. Revello1630

    50-50 to run ... 100% to lose ...

    December 22, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  5. Gregg D

    Looks like the Democrats just need to enter an actual Donkey to win in 2016

    December 22, 2013 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  6. loudmusic

    Attended a taping of a Huckabee show in NYC a couple of years ago. He's a lovely guy with a wonderful wife, and he believes absolutely in what he says. That said, though, he's gotta be kidding about running for President. It's the 21st Century, and no time for the USA to convert into a theocracy.

    December 22, 2013 05:18 pm at 5:18 pm |
  7. Jon

    How about a Christie/Huckabee Ticket?

    December 22, 2013 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  8. Fish

    The Huckster knows very well he isn't running after the murderers he pardoned killed again even his base will turn against him!!! He is simply trying to garner more money from supporters!!!

    December 22, 2013 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
  9. Jimmy the Swartz

    He's got my vote! I used to vote straight Democrat until the "gay" Gestapo started shoving their lifestyle down everyone's throat.

    December 22, 2013 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  10. Abe

    Thank you Jesus. I am so happy and I know he will be next President of UNITED state of America. I am sure there will be a lot of lies coming out to side track, I know God will help and guide him,

    December 22, 2013 05:22 pm at 5:22 pm |
  11. Moses

    Dear Jesus:
    I admit that I am a sinner and need to be saved. I realize that You alone can save me from my sins, I ask right now for Your forgiveness and salvation. I believe that You died for my sins and that You rose from the grave. I am sorry for my sins and ask that You come into my heart and take control of my life. I ask Your Holy Spirit to lead me and guide me so that I may live for You as my Savior and Lord. In Your Name. Amen.

    December 22, 2013 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  12. Quixote

    He appeals to the duck dynasty one else.....he is entertaining to watch self immolate.

    December 22, 2013 05:25 pm at 5:25 pm |
  13. chad

    this is one of the few men that could turn this country around if we let him. so why is every one so hell bent agent a conservative businessman for president every one other group has had there chance and failed miserably.

    December 22, 2013 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  14. julio b

    Who cares? Nobody cares, Mike. Get over yourself, ok. Now, about Phil Robertson...

    December 22, 2013 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  15. Tallulah

    He is delusional. Hasn't a prayer, or a snowball's chance in he!!, of winning a primary, let alone his party's nomination.

    December 22, 2013 05:30 pm at 5:30 pm |
  16. 54StarryNights

    The chance that he will run may about 50/50, but the chance that he would win if he ran would be close to nil.

    December 22, 2013 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |
  17. Frenchy Pacella

    If he runs it will be an enormous Christmas present for whomever the Democratic candidate it. His position, ""more appropriate for the duck woods.." is code for "ignorance, racism, and hatred are encouraged as long as they are spoken in hushed tones."

    December 22, 2013 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  18. RDH

    Huck seems like a real guy, but I think Ron Paul would be the best thing that happened to America since declaring independence from England. I see no one from the democrate side thats any good, I'm sure there are few but none of the big names thats for sure.

    December 22, 2013 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  19. Lively one

    While the right-wingers are preaching their gospel (only the Old Testament, they're not interested in what Jesus taught) their billionaire backers are deregulating the banks so they can get richer on money we lose, destroying our water and air (see the laws that passed due to Koch brother's donations that will allow them to dump their toxins into our rivers, etc) and allowing pharmaceutical companies to more than double-charge us for our meds. They don't want you to know all this, of course, hence the issues of gay marriage, abortion, and gun rights...they know how to divert your attention all right.

    December 22, 2013 05:32 pm at 5:32 pm |
  20. AgonySpins

    GQ...A Major News Magazine??? Hah!

    December 22, 2013 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  21. Paul

    Aha ha ha ha! Aha ha ha ha! Oh, man... good one!

    December 22, 2013 05:33 pm at 5:33 pm |
  22. Calcommuter

    Wash, wax and gas up the Republican Presidential Cadidate Clown Car. Squeeze in, make room. There will be a lot of them in there!!

    December 22, 2013 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  23. Karl Cheney

    There's 100% chance he'll run FROM Sarah Palin.

    December 22, 2013 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  24. Christopher Riess

    Bullying? The American public is sick to death of politicians who drag God into everything. We will NOT have another 4 years where the only thing we hear about is abortion, socialism and how gay marriage is going to kill America. Oh, and God. God. GOD. I'm pleased to see the GOP attempting to push the Tea Party out to sea, but still the stench emanating from the big tent implies that it is filled with rotting corpses. People like Huckabee, Palin, Bachmann et al have killed any hope of a conservative movement in this country. I am not willing to sit and listen to these crackpots any longer.

    December 22, 2013 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  25. Leslie

    Ultimately it is his decision of course. But it makes you wonder, what is he thinking?

    December 22, 2013 05:40 pm at 5:40 pm |
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