As Romney Falters in Republican Race, Huckabee’s Drive Gathers Momentum

BOSTON — Even before the results were clear on Tuesday, Mitt Romney’s advisers conceded that they faced a steep climb to the nomination because of simple delegate math.

But now they also have to cope with a strong competitor to their momentum. Mr. Romney and his archrival for conservative voters, Mike Huckabee of Arkansas, each won at least five states on Tuesday. Mr. Huckabee lost narrowly in Missouri to Senator John McCain of Arizona.

Speaking to supporters on Tuesday night in suburban Little Rock, Ark., Mr. Huckabee, former governor of the state, derided the view that he was to be counted out, telling a modest-size crowd that the vote had indeed turned the Republican contest into a two-person race — and that he was in it.

“Tonight, we’re proving we’re still on our feet, and much to the amazement of many, we’re getting there,” he said to cheers.

He gave no indication that his still substantial delegate deficit was a reason for pulling out.

“As long as there are still votes and delegates, there’s going to be one guy answering the bell every time there’s a new round,” Mr. Huckabee told his supporters.

Though Mr. Huckabee lacks a convincing route to the nomination, his continued presence promises to make Mr. Romney’s path much more rugged, drawing away the very conservative voters Mr. Romney had counted on to defeat Mr. McCain.

Mr. Romney’s aides tried to minimize the Huckabee effect, saying it would simply delay his progress, not prohibit it.

“Huckabee has a specific appeal on specific issues to an important sliver of the electorate,” said Kevin Madden, a spokesman for Mr. Romney. “What Huckabee seems to be doing is still maintaining that specific appeal. What it’s done is it hasn’t stopped us. But instead it’s drawn out the primary calendar.”

Mr. Madden acknowledged that without Mr. Huckabee in the race, almost every previous nominating contest might have turned out differently.

“We’d have a greater ability to bring together these coalitions of conservatives, the economic and the social and the national security conservatives, and be the best candidate to unite the party,” Mr. Madden said.

Mr. Huckabee’s campaign manager, Chip Saltsman, said that the results on Tuesday had given the former Arkansas governor’s efforts a big boost and that contributions had increased.

“It gives us a lot of momentum, going forward,” Mr. Saltsman said. “I think we go forward with a lot more money than we thought we were going to have.”

He said Mr. Huckabee was not angling for second place on the Republican ticket.

“We’re still running for president,” Mr. Saltsman said. “We’re not running for vice president.”

As an example of the Romney campaign’s hurriedly revised calculations, aides had begun discussing an unlikely strategy that relies on delegates who are pledged to other candidates but who are not technically bound to them. Under that plan, the advisers envision that conservative fears continue to work against Mr. McCain, buying time and fueling a series of big victories for Mr. Romney. That would place him at a point where he has enough momentum to wrest some of the promised but not bound delegates into his column at a contested convention.

“Anybody who says it’s all going to be a mathematical exercise is wrong,” said Tom D. Rath, a senior adviser in the Romney campaign. “The math will follow the politics.”

The math, however, is daunting. Even some of the campaign’s more promising hypothetical delegate counts for how the race might shake out by Wednesday would leave them facing a serious deficit in the race to the 1,191 needed to clinch the nomination.

Under less rosy situations, Mr. Romney could be left with the almost impossible situation of having to win almost every remaining contest.

On the other hand, conservative grass-roots anger does appear to be building in some corners against Mr. McCain. Several conservative commentators have thrown their weight behind Mr. Romney.

On Tuesday, James C. Dobson, founder of Focus on the Family, released a blistering statement about Mr. McCain, saying he could not in good conscience vote for the senator.

Meanwhile, Mr. McCain has been playing up the names of conservatives who have endorsed him, including Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma, whom he called “the most conservative member of the Senate.”

Mr. Romney’s advisers hope the upshot of the grass-roots anger and a divided delegate picture is that they will be able to derail at least temporarily the rush to crown Mr. McCain as the nominee.

“The calendar gets spread out enough so you can compete everywhere,” said Ben Ginsberg, a senior adviser to Mr. Romney. “And the sort of rebellion that’s taking place in the grass roots against McCain has more time to take root.”

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Huckabee wins all 18 W.Va. delegates

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – Mike Huckabee won the first contest declared on Super Tuesday, picking up all 18 national delegates awarded at West Virginia‘s state GOP convention

Read it Here

Mike Huckabee – on the issues.

A Voter’s guide…

ACCOMPLISHMENTS
1. With ten-and-a-half years of experience running state government, Governor Mike Huckabee of Arkansas has more relevant executive experience than any candidate in the race – either Republican or Democrat.

2. Recognized and tapped by his peers for leadership, the National Governor’s Association selected Governor Huckabee as it’s Chairman.

3. TIME Magazine honored him as one of the five best Governors in America.

4. Governor Huckabee is a fiscal conservative who cut taxes almost 100 times in the state of Arkansas, including the state’s first broad-based tax cuts, and turned a $200 million deficit into an $850 million surplus.

ISSUES
1. TAXES/ECONOMY –Governor Huckabee supports The FairTax because it will restore the “Made in America” label, making American goods 12-25% more competitive, boosting economic growth, increasing our exports, and securing American jobs. It also prevents criminals or illegal aliens from avoiding taxes, and makes the taxes we all pay 100% transparent.

2. GOVERNMENT SPENDING – Governor Huckabee is committed to reducing government spending. One way he’ll do this is by reducing the cost of welfare. Governor Huckabee will work with states to reduce welfare roles through programs like the one he implemented in Arkansas, which reduced welfare roles by 50%.

3. HEALTH CARE –Governor Huckabee will implement a consumer-based healthcare system that emphasizes preventative medicine and wellness. Because 70% of our $2 trillion dollar healthcare costs is spent treating chronic, preventable diseases, this approach will make healthcare more affordable for everybody while keeping us healthier.

4. FAMILY VALUES –Governor Huckabee supports a federal constitutional amendment to protect the right to life. He Successfully fought for Arknasas’ marriage amendment and strongly supports a similar, federal constitutional amendment defining marriage as a union between one man and one woman.

5. IMMIGRATION –Governor Huckabee will secure the border (with physical barriers, electronic surveillance, and more border-patrol personnel and detention facilities). He will also end sanctuary cities and increase penalties on, and enforcement against, employers who hire illegal immigrants. Governor Huckabee will make sure the border patrol has adequate funding to end our “catch and release” system so that everyone caught trying to enter illegally, overstaying their visa, or committing a crime will be held until they’re tried, convicted, and deported. Gov. Huckabee has also signed the Numbers USA “No Amnesty” Pledge.

6. WAR ON TERROR AND IRAQ – Governor Huckabee knows it takes a large, well-equipped military to ensure our national defense and to deter conventional military confrontations. He also knows we need large, well-equipped intelligence and Special Forces operations for our national offense – so we can effectively find and eliminate terrorist threats at home or abroad. Governor Huckabee will be a Commander in Chief who knows that IF WE HAVE TO FIGHT A WAR, our President has to fight it the way our GENERALS tell him it can be won, not the way we want it to be won.

7. ENERGY INDEPENDENCE –Governor Huckabee will implement a program to end the import of foreign oil in the next ten years by increasing domestic oil production in the short term, and then replacing oil-based energy infrastructure with alternative and renewable energies.

8. CLEMENCIES – Arkansas Governors grant clemency, but the parole board grants parole. Wayne DuMond’s parole was granted by the board and NOT Governor Huckabee.

9. TAXES –When Governor Huckabee left office, the tax rates remained exactly the same as when he first came into office. Governor Huckabee returned almost $400 million to Arkansas taxpayers, and he also DOUBLED the standard deduction for individuals and married couples, DOUBLED the childcare tax credit, and eliminated the marriage penalty. He also repealed capital gains taxes for home sales, lowered the capital gains rate by 25%, expanded the homestead exemption, and set up tax-free savings accounts for medical care and college tuition.  Gov. Huckabee has also signed the Americans for Tax Reform’s pledge not to raise taxes.

10. SECOND AMENDMENT
• Lifetime member of the NRA, member for over 15 years
• First Governor to have concealed-carry permit
• Removed restrictions on carry permit holders
• Protected gun manufacturers from frivolous lawsuits
• Opposes reauthorization of the Assault Weapon Ban
• Opposes expansion of the unconstitutional “Brady Bill”
• Opposes waiting period for purchase of firearms
• Opposes background checks on private firearms transactions at gun shows
• Will nominate judges who interpret the constitution as the Founders intended, rather than as a “living document reflecting current political trends or opinions”
• An avid hunter and conservationist, and a member of the Ducks Unlimited, National Wild Turkey Federation and BASS.

Conservative Choice Magazine – Huckabee: The New Face of Conservatism?

Interesting article.

CLICK HERE to read the article posted on my New Jersey blog.

Mike Huckabee’s Florida Primary Speech

Transcript

The following is a transcript of Mike Huckabee’s speech to supporters after the Florida primary, as provided by CQ Transcriptions via The Associated Press.

MIKE HUCKABEE: Well, folks, I wanted to tell you what we’re doing. We are rehearsing for the victory speech we’ll be able to give about Missouri next week.

(APPLAUSE) I was kind of hoping for a warm welcome in Missouri and there’s about 50-mile-an-hour winds and snow out here. I wish that I had brought the Florida weather with me today. I think we would have all enjoyed that very much.

Well, I think we’re all aware that the situation in Florida is that we’re going to be in a position looking at either third or fourth. Now, for those of you that think I should be discouraged, let me just remind you that going into tonight, we were second in delegate count and, more importantly, we’re playing all nine innings of this ballgame.

(APPLAUSE)

Even the Cardinals occasionally have a rough inning, but they know how to win championships.

What I want to express to you is next week, when we are going to be in Missouri and Oklahoma and Arkansas and Tennessee and Alabama and Georgia and all of these states where we’re leading in the polls, and we’re still going to be leading next week, we’re going to have a great opportunity to start taking it all the way home to the nomination and to the White House, and it’s going to happen a lot because of Missouri next week.

(APPLAUSE)

And we appreciate the great support we’re getting. I want to say thanks to the people of Florida. There’s going to be probably, before it’s over, maybe up to 300,000 people down there who worked their hearts out for us and those people, I can’t tell you how proud I am of them, because they had no resources.

Others have spent millions and millions of dollars. We knew that we wouldn’t have those kind of resources to play there. So we went out there and just worked with people who would come out, put their own signs out, buy their own t-shirts and hats.

A lady in Pensacola, she and her daughter put out 700 signs, just the two of them, in one day. Unbelievable. And that’s the kind of thing that’s happening across this country with our campaign that a lot of people still haven’t figured out.

And when you look at what we have done with what we have, it’s a remarkable story that is not even close to being over. In fact, we like to believe we’re just really getting started.

(APPLAUSE)

There are some great folks down there. Our chairman, Senator Daniel Webster, and our co-chairman, House Speaker Marco Rubio, and a host of great Floridians who have been extremely dedicated to our task.

I don’t want them to feel discouraged. I want them instead to feel very proud of their effort and be as half as proud of their effort as I am of them and the wonderful work that they’ve done for us.

I know it’s a little tight in this room. We really anticipated that we might have 100 people. We thought that about half of this would be enough, and we did not expect the weather to be this bad.

And I don’t know if you’re coming here because you’re escaping then cold and the heat is out in your house, but because of the weather, we’ve got to get to California tonight. So our exit will be a little quicker than we had wanted it to be, and I apologize in advance for that, but I’m sure you understand that we’ve got to be at the Reagan Library tomorrow night.

So we’re flying out as soon as we leave here, headed to California, because I’m going to be on that stage tomorrow night. I’m not sure everybody’s going to be there, but I will be.

(APPLAUSE)

And I need you here in Missouri to join with us in being a part of a wonderful volunteer army across this country who believes that it would be a better America if we did not have the IRS making it…

(APPLAUSE)

… and that believe that it would be a better America if we did stand up for human life and traditional marriage.

(APPLAUSE)

And that it would be a better America if we actually sealed our borders and became energy independent within 10 years.

And that it would be a better America if we had a country that once again believed in its future and believed that it’s not so much just about Democrats versus Republicans and the left versus the right and liberals versus conservatives, it’s about Americans building a better future for their kids and their grandkids and taking this country up and not down.

And that’s why people are with us and across this country, we’re finding homemakers and truck drivers and people who wait tables, as well as folks who work in the lines at the factories, and people who run their own business, and I want to be the president who reminds America that that small business owner out there, every day, working hard and taking a risk is the person that ought to believe that his government is going to be out there to under-gird him, not undermine his every move, and we’re going to make sure that happens in this country.

(APPLAUSE)

And you’re going to help be a part of that.

I wish we had cooked food for all of you. I bet right now you’re wishing it, too.

AUDIENCE MEMBER: Fried chicken.

HUCKABEE: Fried chicken. I gave it up a few years ago. But I do know how to eat it if I ever get it, that’s right.

I want to, again, express my thanks to Ray Wagner (ph) and all of the folks here in Missouri who have been working with us, Jeff Rowe (ph) and so many others who have just helped us have great confidence that between now and seven days from now, there’s going to be something that we’ll all be shouting about.

And it won’t just be a Missouri victory, but also, that same night, there’ll be one in Georgia and Alabama and Tennessee, and there’ll be one in Arkansas and Oklahoma, and maybe a few other places that people aren’t even expecting it to happen.

Thank you folks for being here. God bless every one of you. Pray hard, work hard, get the votes out. Remember this — if they’re going to vote for me, make sure they come. If they’re not, don’t let them out of their driveway.

Thank you, folks. God bless you. Thank you.

Florida Pastor Bryan Longworth: Huckabee Can Win if Christians Show Up at the Polls

Florida Pastor Bryan Longworth says that Mike Huckabee Can Win the Nomination if Christians Show Up at the Polls and Vote their Values

Contact: Pastor Bryan Longworth, 772-380-2111

 

PORT ST. LUCIE, Florida, Jan. 28 /Christian Newswire/ — Florida Pastor Bryan Longworth says that Mike Huckabee Can Win the Nomination if Christians Show Up at the Polls and Vote their Values. Christians make up the largest voting block in America, and when they show up and vote their values, conservatives win. Longworth says that Mike Huckabee is the only conservative among the frontrunners. If Christians support Huckabee, Huckabee can carry Florida and win the Republican nomination.

 

“Huckabee is the only front runner who showed up at the Value Voters 2008 Presidential Debate and who will champion the Federal Human Life and Marriage Amendments. It is time that Values Voters get serious about defending life and the institution of marriage. We have shed the blood of over 50,000,000 preborn children through abortion, and now face the undermining of traditional marriage that threatens the family, the most basic institution that upholds a society. Enough is enough. Values voters must vote for candidates that will defend life and the family. Mike Huckabee is the only frontrunner who will fight for these issues,” Longworth argues.

 

Longworth laments, “For far too long, Christians stood idly and allowed our nation to slip into moral depravity. We stood by while creationism was replaced with Darwinism. We stood by while the Bible, prayer, and the Ten Commandments were removed from schools. We stood by while men, women, and children engaged in vile sexual perversion. We stood by while over 50,000,000 preborn children have been slaughtered by abortion. We stood by while Gov. Romney allowed homosexual marriage in Massachusetts. We stood by while the Ten Commandments were removed from public places. Edmond Burke said, ‘All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.’ We will stand by no longer. It is time for the church to stop playing church, and start being the church!”

 

Pastor Bryan Longworth is the associate pastor of Covenant Tabernacle World Outreach Center* in Port St. Lucie, FL. Longworth’s recent sermon entitled “The Importance of Voting” can be heard Sunday, January 27 from 9:30-10:00 on 1590 AM WPSL and on his church’s website. Values Voter Guides are available at FLVotesValues.com.

 

Longworth recently recorded a PSA informing values voters of the debate viewing, a copy of which can be heard at his church’s website.

Georgia: Huckabee 34% McCain 19% Romney 16% Alabama: Huckabee and McCain tied for first

The key is deligates, which we’re ahead on McCain. Florida is winner take all and we know we’re not in the top two so it’s smart campaigning in other states while the rest of the gang duke it out in Fla.Now for some Rasmussen poll numbers:
While John McCain and Mitt Romney are fighting for the lead in Florida’s Presidential Primary on January 29, Mike Huckabee has the lead in Georgia.The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey in Georgia finds Huckabee with 34% of the vote followed by McCain at 19%, Romney with 16%, Ron Paul with 12% and Rudy Giuliani in fifth with 11%.Huckabee is viewed favorably by 70% of Likely Republican Primary Voters, McCain by 63%, Giuliani by 63%, Romney by 62%, and Paul by 25%

McCain is seen as the most electable Republican—70% believe he would be at least somewhat likely to win the White House if nominated. Fifty-nine percent (59%) believe Huckabee would have a chance to win while 55% say the same about both Giuliani and Romney. Just 12% believe Paul would have a chance to win the election if nominated.

Nationally, McCain, Romney, and Huckabee lead in the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll.

ALABAMA

John McCain and Mike Huckabee are tied for the lead in Alabama’s Republican Presidential Primary. McCain and Huckabee each attract 27% support while Mitt Romney is a distant third at 15%. Rudy Giuliani is the choice for 8% while Ron Paul is supported by 3% and 20% are not sure.Huckabee currently attracts support from 37% of Evangelical Christians likely to participate in the Primary while McCain leads among other Protestant voters with 32%.Just 40% of the state’s Likely Primary Voters are certain they won’t change their mind before the February 5 Primary.McCain is viewed favorably by 75%, Huckabee by 71%, Giuliani by 64%, Romney by 60% and Paul by 23%.

John McCain is seen as the most electable candidate. Seventy-six percent (76%) believe that McCain would be at least somewhat likely to win the White House if nominated. Just 59% of the state’s Primary Voters are that confident about Huckabee, 56% say the same about Giuliani, and 56% hold that view of Romney. Just 12% think Paul would have a chance of winning in November if nominated.

Nationally, McCain, Romney, and Huckabee lead Obama in the Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll,