Two New York Times #1 bestsellers in the 1970s were “Winning Through Intimidation” and “Looking Out For Number One”.  Thirty years later, author Robert Ringer is trying to intimidate the one many polls indicate is the number one prospect to beat Barack Obama in 2012:  Mike Huckabee. 

When the self-help guru attacks Mike Huckabee, he plainly intends to attack millions of Christians along with the former Governor of Arkansas.  Robert Ringer assumes that because many Christians prioritize the protection of unborn babies and the sacred character of marriage, we are all closet liberals on economic issues. He wrote a year ago:

“If Gov. Huckabee could find a way to put together a coalition of evangelicals and disenfranchised liberal Democrats, he could conceivably slip in without the support of the conservative Republican base – and use the same strategy to win the presidency.”

Notice Ringer assumes pro-family evangelicals hold economic positions contrary to “the conservative Republican base”.  On the contrary, it is sell-outs to the Republican agenda on economics who reliably vote against social positions valued by GOP Evangelicals (Snowe, Collins, and Specter come to mind.)   It wasn’t social conservatives who pushed for TARP of 2008 and the bailouts/stimulus packages of 2009.  If evangelicals find someone as reliable as Huckabee on social issues and more conservative on the economy, they will abandon Huckabee.  Ron Paul was not able to woo these folks because of his stand on the war, and his state’s rights views on abortion and marriage.

And who are those “disenfranchised liberal Democrats” who would vote for Huckabee?   I challenge Ringer to name one single prominent Democrat who would prefer Huckabee over Obama because Obama is not liberal enough.  Or even an unknown Democrat.  Maybe he meant to say Huckabee could attract Reagan Democrats.  Now that would have been a good call.   

Now one year later, Ringer is at it again. This time he expresses fear that Huckabee is the “Most Dangerous Man in America” because after a friendly interview of Michelle Obama, Huckabee started “an all-out assault on Barack Obama and his policies – and he’s been at it ever since”[1].  He implies that this is insincere, but Huckabee has been solidly against the Obama agenda since day one. He opposed universal health care and mandates, he was against Cash for Clunkers, and he spoke strongly against the stimulus package.

Ringer calls Huckabee a confused conservative likened to George Bush who “abandoned his free-market principles ‘in order to save the free market.’”  He is referring to Bush and TARP.  But he is the one confused.  Huckabee came out against the stimulus immediately even though John McCain voted for TARP.  Perhaps he recognized that McCain had doomed himself with the TARP “yes” vote after making great strides with conservatives by the Sarah Palin pick.  But Ringer is so blinded he can’t see the political libel he has committed against Huckabee. 

Hatred of Huckabee in some circles has gone irrational.  Ringer joins them, though I do agree with one Ringer thought:  “If he wins the Republican nomination, he will easily annihilate the angry, whining BHO and ascend to the presidency.”  Now that is something to celebrate.  Perhaps Huckabee has finally won over the “he can’t win” folks.   But now it is Ringer who is doing a little recruiting for other intimidators: “Start spreading the word now that Mike Huckabee must be stopped.”  Is that because he is number one?

[1] For the record, I think the Obama initiative on obesity was unconstitutional and foolish.  I know Ringer finds it hard to believe a Christian like me could be so thoughtful.

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