It had been quite some time since Mike Huckabee had insulted, crossed, and otherwise annoyed limited-government conservatives. As one of the very few high-profile Republicans to openly oppose TARP, he had a tremendous opportunity to rebuild bridges.
Today, at King’s College (NYC), Huckabee not only refused to rebuild those bridges, but he set fire to a few more (Brian Stewart – NRO: The Corner):
Huckabee flatly denied being a “pro-life liberal,” an accusation often made in certain quarters on the right. Not a trace of defensiveness could be detected on this point. To the contrary, the governor gave an all-out defense of his tax hikes while governor of Arkansas on the grounds that they were the only responsible course of action to repair state roads. He snorted with derision at “libertarians” who fail to recognize that “we don’t have a health care crisis in this country, but a health crisis.” He spoke with passion and knowledge on the need for preventative care to bring down exorbitant costs. And then, without the least amount of prompting, he mustered a vigorous defense of Mrs. Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign against childhood obesity. This was the “art of governing,” he argued, rather than the cheap “science of campaigning.”
Where to begin!
For starters, the tax-hikes-for-roads nonsense is a common feature here in Virginia, at least until Speaker Bill Howell and his fellow Republicans in the House of Delegates finally got over their HB3202-induced tax-fever. The rest was just Huckabee’s typical drivel. In fact, his last line about the “art of governing” – citing a First Lady campaign – would be hilarious if it wasn’t so tragically ignorant.
He then digs himself even deeper with this:
Invited to plea for cuts in defense spending, he delicately declined, but noted that combat operations in Afghanistan were futile and therefore constituted government “waste.”
Let that sink in for just a minute: fighting the Taliban is now government waste to Mike Huckabee.
Stewart called Huckabee “The Face of Conservative Populism.” That Huckabee can still manage to get “conservative” attached to himself is all the more reason I call myself a right-wing liberal.
Also cross-posted to Virginia Virtucon