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2016 U.S. Presidential Campaign: Mike Huckabee

Mike Huckabee is an author and political commentator who served as the 44th Governor of Arkansas. Huckabee sought the Republican nomination for President during the 2016 elections, but suspended his campaign after faring badly during the Iowa caucus. He hosted the Fox News Channel show, Huckabee, from 2008 until January 2015, when he cancelled the show to explore the possibility of running for President. Huckabee identifies as a Christian-Zionist, and has visited Israel many times since he was a teenager.

Mike Huckabee was born in Hope, Arkansas, on August 24, 1955. He can trace his family's lineage back to the original 13 colonies, and he is of English ancestry. Huckabee was a star student in high school and was always involved with student government or class planning. The year after he graduated he married his high school sweetheart, Janet, and went on to complete his Bachelors degree in religion from Ouachita Baptist University in only five semesters.

Following his college graduation Huckabee took a job as a staffer for televangelist James Robinson, and later began a career as a Pastor at various churches around Arkansas. He hosted local access television stations in Pine Bluff and Texarkana Arkansas, and preached using a variety of mediums. Huckabee served as the president of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention from 1989 - 1991, and ran his first real political campaign in 1992. He lost a Senatorial race to the incumbent Democrat, but during the same election Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton was elected to the Presidecy. The Lieutenant Governor stepped into Clinton's place, and Huckabee was encouraged by friends and peers to run for the vacant Lieutenant Governor spot. He won in a special election after running a more conservative campaign, and was re-elected in 1994.

In 1996 Arkansas Governor Jim Tucker was convicted of fraud and forced to step down, as a convicted felon cannot legally hold office in Arkansas. Huckabee was sworn in as Governor on July 15, 1996, and was elected to subsequent 4-year terms in 1998 and 2002. During Huckabee's governorship, Arkansas state debt increased by approximately $1 billion.

In January 2007 Huckabee announced on the television program Meet The Press that he would be seeking the Republican nomination for the presidency during the 2008 election. Despite winning the Iowa Caucus, enjoying widespread support from religious organizations, and having strong showings in primaries nationwide, Huckabee conceeded when it was clear that his competitor, John McCain, would win the Republican nomination. He did not attempt a presidential run against incumbent Barack Obama in 2012.

Mike Huckabee believes that we should be expanding the military and increasing military spending, and is opposed to all types of gun control regulations. As Governor of Arkansas Huckabee supported and passed legislation prohibiting same-sex marriage, supported the death penalty, and pushed for the teaching of intelligent design and the display of the ten commandments in public schools. During his Presidential campaign Huckabee released a 9-point immigration reform plan that includes increased border security, and would require all illegal immigrants to register with the U.S. government and then return to their home countries within 120 days. A staunch opponent of the Affordable Care Act, Huckabee is in favor of repealing the law.

Amid speculation that he would be seeking the nomination in 2016, Huckabee pulled his talk show off the air in January 2015. He announced that he would officially be seeking the Republican nomination for the presidency on May 5, 2015, in his hometown.

Huckabee suspended his campaign on February 1, 2016, the night of the Iowa caucus, after receiving only 1.8% of the vote.


U.S. - Israel Relationship

  • “I think it is very important that as Americans we show support for Israelis in their capacity to build their neighbourhoods in their own country.”
    (The Gaurdian, August 19, 2015)
  • “A threat to Israel is a threat to America. Stand with Israel. Reject a nuclear Iran.”
    (CNN, July 27, 2015)
  • “[Jews] reflect the values upon which our country was founded.”
    (Washington Post, February 3, 2015)
  • “In a world of uncertainty, evil, and moral insanity, Israel is a shining light of moral clarity. The enemies of Israel are the enemies of America.”
    (Mike Huckabee Campaign Website)
  • Huckabee has visited and led tour groups in Israel countless times since he was a teenager, some years making three or four trips to the Holy Land.

Iran

  • “Since more than two-thirds of the American population oppose the Iranian agreement, it would seem that if they truly are working for the people and they listen to their bosses, they will go back and vote against this.”
    (Breitbart, August 19, 2015)
  • “They’re quite aware what the Iranians are capable of, and so they take seriously the threats from the Iranians when they say they would wipe them off the face of the earth, and when they say ‘death to America,’ when an Iranian official said, and I quote, ‘we have developed missiles that will deliver the Holocaust to Israel’- I mean, those are the kind of statements that the Iranians have made that obviously they took very seriously.”
    (Breitbart, August 19, 2015)
  • President Obama's Iran Policy is “tak[ing] the Israelis and march[ing] them to the door of the oven.”
    (New Orleans Times, July 27, 2015)
  • “A threat to Israel is a threat to America. Stand with Israel. Reject a nuclear Iran.”
    (CNN, July 27, 2015)
  • “We haven't had diplomatic relations with Iran in almost 30 years, my whole adult life. A lot of good it's done us. Putting this in human terms, all of us know that when we stop talking to a parent or a sibling or a friend, it's impossible to accomplish anything, impossible to resolve differences and move the relationship forward. The same is true for countries.”
    (CNN, July 27, 2015)

Hamas and the Situation in Gaza

  •  “Hamas, Hezbollah, Muslim Brotherhood, Al-Qaeda, Boko Haram, and ISIS are all branches from the same sick tree.”
    (Fox News, September 9, 2014)
  • “Hamas agreed to 11 different ceasefire agreements and broke every one of them except the most recent. .”
    (Fox News, September 9, 2014)

Israeli-Palestinian Conflict

  • “No President of the United States should pressure Israel to give up land God gave them the original deed to. I want to remind you that Israel has consistently and repeatedly given up, given up, given up, and given up and gotten nothing in return.”
    (Republican Jewish Coalition Forum, December 3, 2015)
  • “It would be as if I would come and say we need to end our 400-year occupation of Manhattan. I think most Americans would think that laughable.”
    (Jerusalem Post, August 19, 2015)
  • “As long as one of the sides does not acknowledge Israel’s right to exist, there cannot be a real peace.”
    (Jewish Press, August 19, 2015)
  • “I feel that we have a responsibility to respect that this is land that has historically belonged to the Jews.”
    (Haaretz, August 9, 2015)
  • “I think the notion of two governments operating on the same piece of real estate is unrealistic and unworkable.”
    (Haaretz, August 9, 2015)

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