Jonathan Martin had a post up at POLITICO today that indicated that Governor Haley Barbour (R-MS) and Governor Mike Huckabee (R-AR) may or may not have met together.
Ok, this is Jonathan Martin so we have to take the story somewhat with a grain of salt since again none of the “aides” interviewed had names…. classic Martin fare.
He does quote some of their recent remarks that make me wonder if Governor Huckabee is considering backing Barbour (or at least is being courted for an endorsement).
Before speaking at a college outside Jackson on Monday, Huckabee showered Barbour with praise, telling reporters that the former Republican National Committee chairman “is maybe the most brilliant political strategist in America today, bar none” and that he’d be “an amazingly strong” White House candidate.
Huckabee also added that should he run and Barbour decide against a bid, he’d covet the Mississippian “and his Rolodex.”
“No one I’d rather have on my side,” Huckabee said, according to the Associated Press.
Ok he’d rather have no one on his side? Governor Haley “Let the main thing be the main thing” Barbour who seems to believe we need to neglect social issues? That guy? I understand he’s a friend, but his strategy thus far I believe will be counterproductive.
Haley has been gushing on Huckabee as well…
“I have a great affection for Mike Huckabee,” Barbour said after explaining how, as chairman of the RNC in 1993, he helped get the Arkansan elected lieutenant governor after Bill Clinton became president. “I also have a great admiration for him, you know I have known him all these years and I’m wondering why he doesn’t have an accent like I do. Do they teach that at seminary, is that where I missed that?
At the end of his remarks, Barbour slipped in another reference to his old friend and neighbor.
“[T]he real thing is what are you going to do to be sure we have a new conservative Republican president in 2012?” asked Barbour. “Whether it is for me, or Mike Huckabee, or anyone else, because I want your children and grandchildren, my children and grandchildren to inherit the same country inherited.”
Martin seems to think that Huckabee’s endorsement of Barbour would be political gold. It would not hurt, but don’t believe that people will flock to him while Iowans are leery about where he stands on social issues. Barbour will have to earn social conservatives’ trust.
This back and forth between Barbour and Huckabee could indicate Huckabee’s not running, or it could be two old friends talking.
Update: Fox News reports that a Huckabee Insider says Barbour isn’t seeking an endorsement. If the POLITICO article is inaccurate, just add it to Jonathan Martin’s collection.