10:18 AM, Apr 25, 2015 • By DELANY HIGGINS
It can be hard to say anything nice about a man whose administration would malevolently inflict a traffic jam on residents of the Tristate area, but Governor Chris Christie’s recent proposal aimed at fixing the country’s broken Social Security system may make him deserving of forgiveness. The plan focuses on means testing and gradual increases in the retirement age, though even if all of its measures were enacted, it would only address 60 percent of the program’s projected deficit. This is not grandma being pushed off of a cliff in her wheelchair; this is grandma reducing the ideal square footage when purchasing her Boca Raton condo.
Despite the clear urgency of such action, former Governor Mike Huckabee responded to a question about Christie’s plan and ones similar to it by saying, “That’s not a reform. That’s not some kind of proposal that Republicans need to embrace. Because what we’re really embracing at that point, you’re embracing a government that lied to its people. That took money from its people under one pretense, and then took it away from them at the time they started wanting to actually get what they paid for all these years.”
Huckabee’s sense of responsibility to keep government promises is admirable. However, not “embracing” the fact that the government, over the past several decades, utterly misled voters about the sustainability of Social Security will not suddenly make the program solvent. Furthermore, continuing to maintain the program at previously promised rates would only be achievable by wreaking havoc on the financial lives of those who those who were not old enough to vote, or not even born, at the time that the false promises were made.
The government has a responsibility to send the Social Security checks that it has promised would result from the taxes that senior citizens have paid for their whole lives, but it also has a responsibility to operate on a financial time horizon that extends beyond the next election. As Governor Christie appears to recognize, the solution will lie somewhere in the middle.
Unfortunately, this seemingly obvious path is somehow losing traction. Just a few short years ago, Social Security’s insolvency seemed to have bipartisan recognition, with the key items of debate being the proportions in which spending cuts, tax hikes, age increases, and other program details should each contribute to reform.
Recently, however, the Senate voted on an amendment to increase Social Security benefits. Apparently occupying an alternate budgetary reality, all but two Democrats who voted supported the amendment. While it remains to be seen whether these senators’ constituents will view this choice as reckless or be convinced by the Elizabeth Warren narrative that Social Security’s financial woes are a myth concocted by Republicans, such an aggressive move does effectively shift the center of the debate towards the left.
Against a backdrop of a party that wants to expand benefits, any Democratic candidate who is willing to make even the slightest of reforms will appear to be a moderate, and Republican primary competitors who are willing to take a strong stance may appear extreme. If the Senate Democrats’ choice is not clearly seen as the radical grasp that it is, the people most harmed will be those that they claim to protect: the young, the poor, and the disabled. If reforms are not made, those who rely on the government providing a financially secure safety net may one day find it gone entirely.
Delany Higgins is a writer in New York City.
8:26 PM, Mar 26, 2015 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee met with about 40 conservative scholars in California Thursday in preparation for a potential presidential run in 2016. The discussion and Q&A session occurred at Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, and included in attendance George Shultz, Ronald Reagan’s secretary of state. Huckabee later joined Lanhee Chen, a Hoover research fellow and the top policy adviser to Mitt Romney during the 2012 election, in a private, hour-long conversation.
Handicapping the 2016 GOP fieldFeb 23, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 23 • By STEPHEN F. HAYES
It’s still two years before the next president takes the oath of office, but the contest that will determine who raises his right hand that day started in earnest last month for Republicans, with a grassroots gathering in Iowa and a meeting of high-dollar donors in California.
Ole Doc Huck's One Hunnert Persint Guaronteed Magic Diabetes Potion3:26 PM, Feb 9, 2015 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee famously shed more than 100 pounds before his first White House run in 2008. The story of his weight loss was part of Huckabee's political identity during the GOP presidential primary.
At the beginning of his governorship, Huckabee had weighed in at nearly 300 pounds, was diagnosed with diabetes, and told he had just a few years left if he didn't get healthier. After a change in his diet and more exercise, the Republican governor lost a whopping 110 pounds.
Oh my.Feb 16, 2015, Vol. 20, No. 22 • By ANDREW FERGUSON
Boy, that didn’t take long. Over the span of a few short days in late January and early February, three members of the top tier of Republican presidential candidates demonstrated why they’ll never be president. They didn’t do anything to disqualify themselves directly, just revealed the traits that will make them appear unsuitable to most voters by the time the campaign really heats up, say, when the presidential election is a mere 18 months away.
9:15 PM, Jan 3, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
Mike Huckabee signed off his final Fox News show by saying he's thinking about running for president. "Stay tuned," Huckabee said, alluding to his possible entry into the Republican field.
'Patience of Job, the strength of Samson, the courage of David, the perseverance of Noah, the intellect of Paul, the wisdom of Solomon, and the forgiveness of Jesus '8:25 PM, Jan 3, 2015 • By DANIEL HALPER
Mike Huckabee kicked off his final show on Fox News with a lesson on governing -- and a warning:
4:28 PM, Jul 18, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
It's still a year and a half before the first presidential primaries of 2016, but Gallup has a new survey out asking Republicans and Democrats about the potential GOP candidates. Analyzing those candidates' familiarity and favorability among Republicans, Gallup has discovered the best known and best liked are former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee, Kentucky senator Rand Paul, Wisconsin congressman and 2012 vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan, and Texas governor Rick Perry.
8:29 AM, Jan 19, 2012 • By MICHAEL WARREN
A new online ad from Newt Gingrich reminds voters of what the three principals from the 2008 South Carolina primary--John McCain, Mike Huckabee, and Fred Thompson--had to say about Mitt Romney at the time. Watch below:
3:50 PM, Sep 30, 2011 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Reuters reports on new rumors that former Arkansas governor and 2008 Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee is considering getting into the race:
1:58 PM, Sep 12, 2011 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Maggie Haberman reports: "Mike Huckabee rapped Rick Perry for his Social Security comments on Laura Ingraham's radio show, and suggested that Tim Pawlenty lined up behind Mitt Romney because he may be the more 'electable' choice."
2:49 PM, Jun 6, 2011 • By JOHN MCCORMACK
Jan Crawford reports:
As she prepares to enter the race in Iowa later this month, Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann has signed on high-profile political strategist Ed Rollins to run her presidential campaign, according to two sources close to Bachmann.
But others will enter.6:33 AM, May 22, 2011 • By WILLIAM KRISTOL
Not running: Mike Huckabee, the 2008 runner-up; John Thune, the likeliest candidate from the Senate, the body that has produced the out-party candidate in 2008, 2004, and 1996; Mike Pence, who could lay as much claim as anyone to represent the conservative movement; and Haley Barbour and Mitch Daniels, effective two-term governors with impressive D.C. experience as well.