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Janet Huckabee Campaigns Across Maryland

Janet Huckabee, wife of the Republican former Arkansas governor, campaigned across Maryland yesterday in a last-ditch effort before Tuesday's Potomac Primary to deliver a miracle to her husband's presidential hopes.

"It's been a miracle just about every week for us," she told about 40 supporters in Annapolis Monday night. "Tomorrow we want to have some more victories. There is no reason in the world why we should let the talking heads on television tell us who to vote for for president."

The former Arkansas first lady began her sprint through Maryland by
shooting skeet at a gun club in the Western Maryland town of Hagerstown. She said it was chilly -- "A lot chilly!"

"I was extremely impressed with this lady's ability to shoot skeet, and that's exactly what she did," said Maryland House Minority Whip Christopher B. Shank (R-Washington), one of the Huckabee campaign's most prominent surrogates in the state.

Huckabee then visited an Ellicott City coffee shop and met with supporters at a restaurant in Arbutus before ending the day at a historic hotel near the State House in Annapolis. She prepared to stay overnight in Washington with her husband.

A young woman who identified herself as an Evangelical Christian asked Huckabee whether she thinks her husband was "called by God" to lead the nation.

"We're called to be the salt of the earth and a salt doesn't work in a shaker, but has to be out," Huckabee
replied. "Anybody who claims to be a Christian is called to be a leader... Yes, I think he was called to lead."

Huckabee reserved her strongest words for the GOP leaders and political pundits who are calling on her husband to drop out now that Arizona Sen. John McCain has become the clear front-runner for the party's nomination.

"Shame on all of us if we shall let other people tell us how to vote," Huckabee said. "Until the end of the game is here, there's no reason for us to quit ...We are here for the long haul."

But Huckabee also displayed a sense of humor much like her husband's. Before the speech, she joked with reporters about the fact that her maiden name is McCain, but made it clear that she is not related to the Arizona senator. She said the full name on her driver's license -- Janet McCain Huckabee -- often does draw strange looks at airport security checkpoints.

"It's caused quite a challenge getting through TSA nowadays," Huckabee said.

-- Philip Rucker

By Philip Rucker  |  February 11, 2008; 7:27 PM ET
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