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Huckabee says he's 'less likely' to run for president in 2012

Updated 8:02 a.m.
By Garance Franke-Ruta
Even before news broke that he had commuted the sentence of suspected cop-killer Maurice Clemmons, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee told Chris Wallace on "Fox News Sunday" he's less than likely to run for president again.

Huckabee attributed his ambivalence to his love of his new job on the Fox News Channel, where he hosts a show, and lingering questions about whether he would receive any greater support in 2012 from the GOP establishment than he did in 2007-08, when his long-shot bid drew little institutional support and quickly ran out of funds.

"The reason I wouldn't is that this Fox gig I've got right now, Chris, is really, really wonderful, " he told Wallace. "It's easy to say, 'Oh gee, don't you just want to jump back in it?' But jumping into the pool, you gotta make sure there is some water in it."

Pressed about the specific chances he would run, Huckabee said, "It's hard to say."

"A lot of it depends on how the elections turn out next year, and whether Roger Ailes continues to like my show on the weekends, and if all those things factor in, you know, it's less likely than more likely," Huckabee said. "I would have to see that the Republicans would be willing to unite behind me."

Huckabee won the straw poll at the 2009 Value Voters Summit in Washington and had a favorable rating of 70 percent in a recent poll of Iowa Republicans, the highest of all the potential GOP contenders.

"The last time out, my biggest challenge was with the establishment Republicans who just never showed their support, and while I think a person can possibly win without them, the Republican party needs to unite if it's going to win in 2012," he said.

By Garance Franke-Ruta  |  November 30, 2009; 6:30 AM ET
Categories:  44 The Obama Presidency , Mike Huckabee  
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Huckabee is a very decent man and an incredible speaker. That I can't fault him for. However, too often he wears his religion on his sleeve and compared to a candidate like Ron Paul, the change Huckabee would bring is minuscule. This next go-around I need a candidate who truly understands economics and foreign policy and to be truthfully honest the only one I see right now would be Ron paul.

Posted by: sentinel18 | December 1, 2009 3:11 AM | Report abuse


You're "a little stunned by the vitriol"?


Were you too young to remember the vitriol directed at Massachusetts Governor Mike Dukakis during his run for the presidency as a Democrat?

All of a sudden, I see Republicans and right wingnuts saying, "but it wasn't Huckabee's action alone. He was only acting on the advice of the Parole Board."

Of course that same line of reasoning didn't matter to them vis a vis the same situation in Massachusetts.

Since, guns don't kill, people do, why not let him out of prison, where he was far less likely to ever get his hands on a gun, so he can do what people with guns do.

For the NRA, who supports lax control of guns in America, there were dozens of reasons this man never should have been able to obtain a gun, if not locked up already. As long as guns are everywhere and easily obtained, this will be the result.

That's why the U.S. leads the world in gun violence. We don't need the guns to protect our freedoms, as the wingnuts will tell you. None of the democracies in Europe or Japan are in danger of being overthrown by a dictator, but they have strict limits on gun ownership and less than 10% of America's gun violence.

Those who own guns and their family members are far more likely to become victims of gun violence, whether by suicide, accident or homicide than the millions of us who chose to live a peaceful gun-free life. The paranoid illusion that they must protect themselves with a gun, more often than not ends up harming themselves or their loved ones.

Especially, when those guns are poorly secured, they feed the illegal gun trade, arming criminals. The other main avenue for illegal gun sales to criminals is the straw buyer, who buys them by the dozen and sells them out of a trunk to the street thugs.

This could be greatly reduced by monthly limits on the number of gun purchases allowed per individual, but the NRA cries about the effect on their law-abiding members, who must feel the need to arm a militia every month.

Posted by: SimplySecure | November 30, 2009 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Gotta love it that Willie Horton is now haunting the GOP. Karma's a b!tch, ain't it?

Posted by: B2O2 | November 30, 2009 2:25 PM | Report abuse

I am a little stunned by the vitriol. I thought conservatives say it's about personal responsibility -- guns don't kill people, people do. So, is it really Huckabee's responsibility? Take a breath, please.

At this point, Huckabee is the only R that is being seriously considered that I'd consider voting for. (Not Pawlenty, Romney, Palin, Barbour, Jordal, or any other.) I am concerned by some of his anti-science, but I don't think he'd act on these notions as president. At least he is an honorable person.

I have to disagree as well about whether the founding fathers were king makers. Led by Madison, they had serious discussions about how to ensure that populists not arise. They were pretty concerned about the rabble's participation in democracy ... though in the end they supported it. It would be good to read some of their debates rather than just read the mythology about them.

Posted by: prairiepopulist | November 30, 2009 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Mike Huckabee would make a wonderful president, offering strong leadership, common sense and practical life experience. He most likely will not run because we are a knee-jerk society accepting the custom tailored morons handed to us by the elitists who are "king makers" -- and who serve that group before all others. If Jefferson, Washington and Adams held to such ideals, we'd all be paying tax to the British Crown.

Posted by: info13 | November 30, 2009 10:56 AM | Report abuse

Mike who?

Posted by: mortified469 | November 30, 2009 10:02 AM | Report abuse

I am thinking
Ms. Rice
is the only
chance for a moderate/conservative.

She may even acomplish goals,
rather then full time fund raising/

Thanks Mr. Obama.

Posted by: simonsays1 | November 30, 2009 9:54 AM | Report abuse

Mr. Huckabee should give it up now. His liberal views and decisions have cost the lives of four Police Officers.

Posted by: jwsteinhof | November 30, 2009 9:38 AM | Report abuse

Call me an idealist, but being President should require that you seek the executive office every chance you get, not just when it's most convenient or when the wind is just right. Mike should keep his position as host, it's easy to see where his passion lies by this response.

Posted by: direwolfsoul | November 30, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

No chance, no way, no Huckabee. He did a poor job of campaigning last time, he regularly makes a fool of himself on his Faux news show and now his commuting the sentence of cop killer has driven the final nail in the chances of his presidential prospects. Huckabee was always a long shot in the Republican primary even if the value voters liked him.

Posted by: merrylees | November 30, 2009 9:36 AM | Report abuse

Huck's done. Willie Horton.

Posted by: GreenMeansGo | November 30, 2009 9:35 AM | Report abuse

Maybe he'll have time then to explain to the families of four dead police officers why he pardened their killer!

Posted by: gpl2411 | November 30, 2009 9:20 AM | Report abuse

Its hard to imagine Huckabee going through the stress of a presidential campaign again. He's got a great role right now with his talk show on Fox interviewing celebrities and politicians and playing bass with guest musicians. He's comfortable and people are comfortable watching it. Why go back?

Posted by: SusanMarie2 | November 30, 2009 9:09 AM | Report abuse

sure, he is going to run and answer questions as to why he pardoned the Washington State cop killer....good luck slim!

Posted by: californicationdude | November 30, 2009 8:21 AM | Report abuse

Hell if I was Mike Huckabee, I would just get in a Band, good Bass players are hard to find!

Posted by: lek91091 | November 30, 2009 8:13 AM | Report abuse

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