Huckabee Touts Social Issues
...And the media rush to cover the non-existent war between fiscal and social conservatives.
2:29 PM, Feb 15, 2011 • By MARK HEMINGWAY
CNN is currently running with this short report on former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, with a somewhat breathless headline. It seems that for the Baptist preacher turned pol, the "abortion issue trumps all":
Despite the way CNN is framing this, for most Americans -- as well as most potential GOP presidential candidates -- choosing between social issues and the economy isn't likely to be an either/or proposition. It's somewhat interesting that Huckabee is saying this in light of Indiana governor and rumored presidential candidate Mitch Daniels's comments about a "truce" on social issues. However, even Daniels has a good pro-life record as governor, and I doubt his truce would extend to doing anything truly radical and alienating to Republicans on the issue, such as considering appointing pro-abortion justices.
At the same time, Huckabee's fiscal record as a governor isn't the greatest, and given our fiscal problems, this election is going to be a green eye-shade moment. Huckabee's charm and goodwill among Republican primary voters might fade quickly if the debate stays focused on fiscal issues. The media always like to play-up internal GOP rifts and it might be to Huckabee's advantage to capitalize on any tension here -- even if it's a debate largely created and fueled by the press.