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Huckabee's Ready For the Fight

Huckabee: Chuck Norris approved. (AP).

Mike Huckabee is not backing off.

Flanked and supported by movie strongman Chuck Norris, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee told a roomful of Washington reporters Thursday that he will defend his effort to educate the children of illegal immigrants "even if it costs me the election."

Huckabee has been criticized by Mitt Romney and others in the GOP presidential race for supporting legislation in Arkansas that would have made all youngsters who graduate from state high schools eligible to compete for college scholarships, no matter what the legal status of their parents.

With Norris citing examples of children of illegal immigrants he has helped educate through his foundation, Huckabee declared that "my soul will not let me" compromise on that stand--despite the bill's rejection in his state senate.

The former governor, who has risen to a challenging position in Iowa, also renewed his feud with the Club for Growth, which has criticized his record on taxes. "If Ronald Reagan were on the ballot today, the Club for Growth would be running ads against him," Huckabee said, "because he raised taxes in California. He did what all governors have to do. He balanced the budget."

Huckabee told the reporters that he is the Republican best equipped to run against Hillary Clinton because "I beat the Clinton machine four times in Arkansas," where it is even more deeply entrenched than it is nationally.

--David S. Broder

By Washington Post editors  |  November 29, 2007; 4:21 PM ET
Categories:  A_Blog , David Broder  
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