This morning, I posted an essay on the relationship between principles and pragmatism in politics. It was a response to Shane Vander Hart’s article criticizing Mike Huckabee for his support of the House’s actions approving a budget that (at the time) was said to be a true reduction of $38 billion.
I am afraid that by going into such detail about the differences between the two approaches, the application of the philosophy to the case at hand was missed. I did not think the vote was a matter of principle, no matter whether you disagree with Huckabee on the wisdom of his position. Challenge his viewpoint, if you will, but I think it is off base to question his character, principles or integrity on this issue.
I did list two exceptions:
1. If the candidate you support or the congressman has promised to only vote for a budget that reduces the deficit by “X” amount. (The principle would be “don’t vote different than you promised”).
2. They would never ever vote for a budget that did not totally defund Planned Parenthood (The principle is that the organization must be defunded now, and they won’t budge on anything else until that happens.).
I offer the challenge for any potential president candidate to say they would veto any budget proposal that did not defund Planned Parenthood.
If none come forward (or their representatives) I will assume that no one believed that this vote was a matter of principle, and therefore all talk that Huckabee has lost the moral highground is unfounded.