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Huckabee's Religious Support in Iowa Grows

DES MOINES--Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee appears to have consolidated Christian conservative activists in Iowa who had not already signed up for former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney's campaign earlier this year, picking up the endorsements of dozens of pastors from the Hawkeye State today.

In a press conference in his Des Moines office, Huckabee not only accepted the support of many major religious activists in the state, including Chuck Hurley, who runs a conservative policy group here and had been one of Sen. Sam Brownback's top supporters before Brownback dropped out, but also the official backing of evangelical author Tim Lahaye and his wife Beverly, another influential conservative activist. The Lahayes had been quietly backing Huckabee for weeks, even helping organize a conference in Des Moines this week where the former Arkansas Governor was the only candidate who spoke.

"I urge all Christians...to go to your caucuses on Jan. 3 and vote for Mike Huckabee," Tim Lahaye declared, calling him "the most electable who shares our values."

Tim Lahaye, who has co-written a series of best-selling fictional novels about the coming end of the world," said the former governor would help "restore on nation's commitment to biblical values." Hurley was among several former Brownback activists who decided to back Huckabee, even though Brownback himself endorsed Sen. John McCain and has been campaigning for him.

The support comes after a recent poll showing Huckabee with an advantage over Romney here, in part because of his strong backing among evangelical Christians, who are expected to comprise more than a third of the GOP caucus-goers. The question now will be if these religious leaders can help Huckabee turn out the vote here, as he has a fraction of the paid staff in Iowa that Romney has.

Romney himself is giving a speech on his Mormon faith on Thursday, but the address was not prompted by Huckabee's rise, Romney's aides say.

In an event earlier in the day Huckabee had declined to answer when asked by reporters if Mormonism is a "cult," saying he preferred to speak about his own faith. He was asked by a reporter at the endorsement event about his views on intelligent design. He said how the origin of the world should be taught is a matter that should be determined by states and not the federal government, but offered his own thoughts.

"I believe in the beginning God created the heavens and the earth," he said to loud applause from the pastors.

--Perry Bacon Jr.

Posted at 7:54 PM ET on Dec 4, 2007
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Mike Huckabee is a great candidate - As a democrat, i even see his honesty and humble attitude as a great aspect for our next president. However, Huckabee's focus on religion as a requirement and standard for our "free" society will not mesh well with those of other beliefs. Of course the christian population love him, as do i, but a candidate with too much religion and not enough politics is bad news. America needs a leader who can take our biggest faults and change our past into sucess. We need a leader who has a plan, that invloves peace through love and nationality, not through prejudice and religion. America has freedom of religion and i would love to keep it that way. But Mike Huckabee as a person is a man we should all look up to.

Posted by: emma.graham16 | December 19, 2007 2:39 PM

Huckabee has his own Willie Horton problem.

Huckabee, when governor, pushed the parole board into releasing a rapist...who then raped and killed a woman.

Huckabee did this because the victim was a distant relative of Bill Clinton.

Huckabee LIED about this to cover it up, which only makes it worse for him.

If he was a Democrat, the corporate media hookers, which includes the Washington Post, would be all over this.

But its okay if you're a Republican.

Posted by: TomIII | December 5, 2007 4:42 PM

"Mike Huckabee wants to help foreign policy by eliminating our need on foreign oil"

vote4mikehuckabee - that's a nice pipe dream but I doubt Huckabee has the knowledge of gloabl trade and economies to understand that this is merely a pipe dream and is an issue that a new president is not going to solve in four years.

Posted by: peyton.dorne | December 5, 2007 10:23 AM

Its Beverly LaHaye not Barbara Lahaye.

Posted by: phil | December 5, 2007 8:26 AM

Mike Huckabee is a really great role model for society. People really like this down to earth, humble, determined and principled man. He has so much charisma, he's so positive and uplifting. While the other canidates are chopping each other down, Mike is pulling people up.

The American people want a person as President who can unite everyone, not just spend time bickering across party lines. They are tired of the mud slinging, they want action and not just cheap promises. Watching Mike Huckabee in the debates, people see his real character and how humble and trust worthy this person is.

While 5% of the population is Wall Street establishments and the other 5% Scary liberals, the majority are Main street people working hard everyday to make ends meet and raise a family. The people get that real feeling that Mike Huckabee truly understands where those people are coming from.

Mike Huckabee wants to go back to our forefathers way of doing things. From 1777 to 1913 American's could bring back home 100% of their paychecks and still defend the country. Now Americans feel robbed as they have to work till May until they pay the Government their share of taxes. And that date keeps moving up and up. Mike wants to eliminate the IRS and make April 15th just another pretty spring day in America. He wants to eliminate 50 million dollars in spending just trying to run that bureaucracy of complicated taxes and instead make it a simple Flat tax that even a 7 year old running a lemonaide stand can do.

That change would also have a huge impact for America and bring home 50 trillion dollars parked off shore as they local American companies could then compete with international product costs since they to do not have to raise the cost of their products to offset the imbeded tax they have to put in their product.

Plus Mike Huckabee wants to help foreign policy by eliminating our need on foreign oil. He is a determined person (ran three 26.2 mile marathon's in just a few short years), he doesnt want to tinker around for another 30 years talking about it, he wants to change to alternative fuels within 10 years. This will have huge impact on America again as it will cause oil prices to drop like a rock because the thread of supply drops in the meantime we develop these fuels. And once America develops these fuels, other radical countries that support terrorism will back off America because they have no more leverage in contolling American society via finacial chaos.

Mike Huckabee is skyrocketing in the polls, he's determined, he's trustworthy and people really like this guy. The underdog comes from out of no where, and takes 1st place lead with Giuliani in the nation at the blink of an eye. That is a telling America that people really really like his message and his principles. This guy is courting both sides of the fence not just the far right and far left. This guy knows who the real boss is (the American citizens) and he is listening to their instructions and being a role model for society and a shinning light on top of a hill.

Posted by: vote4mikehuckabee | December 5, 2007 6:00 AM

If you're curious about finding out more for yourself about Mr. Huckabee's candidacy go to mikehuckabee.com

Posted by: mwp62 | December 5, 2007 3:04 AM

Mike Up-Chuck-abee continues his religious bigotry and exclusion. He is the worst kind of political candidate imaginable. He won't say that Mormons are not a "cult!" Maybe that's because the cult-of-personality surrounding Mike Up-Chuck-abee is the only real cult here. Or maybe it's because Up-Chuck-abee is the Self-Proclaimed "CHRISTIAN LEADER!" For my entire life I'd always thought that the "CHRISTIAN LEADER" was supposed to be somebody named Jesus of Nazareth. But Up-Chuck-abee appears to be too self-righteous to make room for someone like Jesus.

Posted by: tylercmott | December 5, 2007 12:23 AM

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