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January 4, 2008

NJDC: Iowa Republicans Choose Extremist; Jewish Voters Would Reject Huckabee in General Election

Listed in: Separation of Church and State, Fact Sheets, NJDC News, Press Releases


Washington, D.C - Today, following Mike Huckabee's victory in the Iowa Republican caucuses, NJDC released an updated fact sheet on the former Arkansas Governor's extremism. In addition, NJDC released the following statement from Executive Director Ira N. Forman:

"As our organization has documented over the past several months, Mike Huckabee is way out of the mainstream. In choosing a candidate so beholden to the extremist elements in the Republican base, Iowa Republicans have sent a strong message about the role and power of the religious right in GOP politics. Governor Huckabee's record and rhetoric would certainly not play well with Jewish voters in a general election campaign.

The fact sheet follows and can be downloaded here.



Huckabee called upon a conservative audience to "answer the alarm clock and take this nation back for Christ." In the same speech Huckabee further put his views on the separation of church and state into question when he said: "I didn't get into politics because I thought government had a better answer. I got into politics because I knew government didn't have the real answers, that the real answers lie in accepting Jesus Christ into our lives." [Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 6/8/98]

Huckabee signed on to an ad which said that the Southern Baptist Convention was right "because [it] called wives to graciously submit to their husbands' sacrificial leadership." From ThinkProgress: "In June 1998, the Southern Baptist Convention issued a "statement on the family" that asserted, "A wife is to submit herself graciously to the servant leadership of her husband even as the church willingly submits to the headship of Christ." Two months later, then-governor of Arkansas Mike Huckabee was one of 131 signatories to a full-page ad in USA Today specifically endorsing the Convention's view on marriage: You are right because you called wives to graciously submit to their husbands' sacrificial leadership. [ThinkProgress, 12/11/07]

Huckabee, who does not believe in evolution, favors teaching so-called "intelligent design" in public schools . Click here to watch Huckabee oppose Darwin.
[Associated Press, 12/5/07]

On Huckabee's campaign website, he says that religion "drives" his decisions and that he does not separate religion from his professional life. Additionally, Huckabee pledges that, as President, he would "staff all relevant positions with pro-life appointees." Huckabee also says that his efforts in Arkansas to infringe on a woman's right to choose "are the accomplishments that give him the most pride and personal satisfaction."

Huckabee falsely claimed that most of the signatories of the Declaration of Independence were clergymen ... In fact, only one of 56 was indeed a clergyman. Huckabee said: "The signers of the Declaration of Independence were ‘brave people, most of whom, by the way, were clergymen.'" Per the St. Petersburg Times and Congressional Quarterly's website PoliFact, only John Witherspoon was a clergyman. [, 10/21/07]

Huckabee said that gay marriage could lead to the downfall of American civilization. In response to a debate question on his same-sex marriage position, Huckabee replied: "There's never been a civilization that has rewritten what marriage and family means and survived." (GQ, December 2007)

Huckabee ran a political ad in Iowa in which he said "what really matters is the celebration of the birth of Christ." The ad is online here.

Huckabee called legal abortion a "holocaust." Huckabee told the Family Research Council: "It might be for the last 35 years, we have aborted more than a million people who would have been in our workforce had we not had the holocaust of liberalized abortion under a flawed Supreme Court ruling in 1973." [CNN, 10/21/07]

Huckabee attributed his rise in the polls to divine intervention. "There is only one explanation for it, and it is not a human one. It's the same power that helped a little boy with two fish and five loaves feed a crowd of 5,000 people." (Political Punch, ABC News blog, 12/04/2007)


Huckabee's immigration plan is designed to discourage dual-citizenship. It would impose "civil or criminal penalties" against American citizens who vote in foreign election or use a foreign passport. This would seemingly violate the 1967 Supreme Court decision of Afroyim v. Rusk which stated that American citizens may legally vote in Israeli elections. Congress ratified this decision in 1978.

Huckabee said he was unaware of the NIE report on Iran and demonstrated a profound misunderstanding of geopolitical realities in the Middle East. From Hotline blog: "Asked about the [National Intelligence Estimate] report, Huckabee shook his head slightly to indicate he wasn't familiar with its content ..." And, from Ami Eden's Blog (managing editor of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency): "When asked about a Palestinian state, Gov. Huckabee stated that he supports creating a Palestinian state, but believes that it should be formed outside of Israel. He named Egypt and Saudi Arabia as possible alternatives, noting that the Arabs have far more land than the Israelis and that it would only be fair for other Arab nations to give the Palestinians land for a state, rather than carving it out of the tiny Israeli state." [Hotline Blog, 12/4/07; The Telegraph, 12/12/07]


Huckabee compared environmentalists to "pornographers" and homosexuality to "pedophilia and necrophilia." Writes David Corn in Mother Jones: "In a 1998 book decrying American culture, Huckabee was no seeker of common ground. He drew stark lines, equating environmentalists with pornographers and homosexuality with pedophilia and necrophilia. He also declared that people who do not believe in God tend to be immoral and to engage in "destructive behavior." He drew a rather harsh picture of an American society starkly split between people of faith and those of a secular bent, with the latter being a direct and immediate threat to the nation."

Huckabee said that most prisoners would love to be in a jail like Guantanamo Bay. Said the former Governor: "Most of our prisoners would love to be in a facility more like Guantanamo and less like the state prisons that people are in in the United States." [ThinkProgress 6/7/07]

Huckabee refused to back away from an early 1990s call to quarantine AIDS patients. From the Associated Press: "GOP presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee said Sunday he won't run from his statement 15 years ago that AIDS patients should have been isolated. Huckabee acknowledged the prevailing scientific view then, and since, that the virus that causes AIDS is not spread through casual contact, but said that was not certain ... ‘'I still believe this today,' he said in a broadcast interview, that ‘we were acting more out of political correctness' in responding to the AIDS crisis. ‘I don't run from it, I don't recant it ...'"

Huckabee "joked" that he lost weight because Democrats put him in a concentration camp. "I have just come from six weeks at a concentration camp held by the Democrat party of Arkansas in an undisclosed location, making a hostage tape. That's why I look that way," he said. [Arkansas Times, 10/6/06]


Prior to leaving office, Huckabee had online gift registries allowing lobbyists to know exactly which gifts to buy him in order to curry influence. In response a former Arkansas state government official was quoted as saying: "He's using the trappings of the governor's office to get everything he can, and the sad part of it is, I honestly believe he does not see anything wrong with this," [Arkansas News Bureau, 11/13/06]

Huckabee fired the Director of the Arkansas State Police months after he investigated Huckabee's son for animal cruelty. Allegedly, Huckabee's Chief of Staff and Personal Attorney "leaned' on the John Bailey, the Arkansas State Police Director, in order to prevent an investigation involving Huckabee's son (who was accused of hanging and torturing a stray dog while working at a summer camp). Seven months after he refused to demur, Bailey was fired. [Newsweek, 12/24/07]