I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I love Iowa.  My goal is to run a well-funded, well-organized, and well-executed campaign to do extremely well in the Iowa caucuses in 2016.

In 2008, I competed and finished second in the Iowa straw poll – our first big break on our way to winning the Iowa caucuses and receiving the most votes ever cast for a Republican in the history of the Iowa caucuses. But to win in 2016, it's important to learn from the mistakes of the last few election cycles, in which conservatives were divided and opened a path for a more moderate establishment candidate to ultimately win the nomination, only to lose to Obama.

One of the decisions each Republican candidate for president will have to make leading up to the caucuses is whether to invest the resources to participate in this year's August straw poll.  I appreciate the Iowa GOP for recognizing the need for some reforms, but playing to win in the straw poll still requires a heavy concentration of staff and financial resources. 

After consulting with many of our Iowa volunteers and supporters, as well as key activists whose opinion we value, I have decided to forego taking part in the Iowa straw poll - or any other straw poll - and will instead focus our campaign's attention and resources on the Iowa caucuses.  

Conservative and hard-working Iowans want a strong and principled conservative Republican nominee for president who represents their values. I have concluded this year’s Iowa straw poll will serve only to weaken conservative candidates and further empower the Washington ruling class and their hand-picked candidates.

History will repeat itself if we don’t learn from the past. It’s clear that pitting conservative candidates with limited resources against each other in a non-binding and expensive summer straw poll battle, while allowing billionaire-backed establishment candidates to sit out, will only wound and weaken the conservative candidates who best represent conservative and hard-working Iowans. 

If conservatives are divided and we lose the Iowa caucuses next year, there will be no winners. 

Past winners in recent straw polls didn’t result in caucus victories and we want to dedicate our resources and focus our volunteers in Iowa towards the caucuses, which matter greatly in determining our next president.  And if you question how important the Iowa caucuses really are, just ask our last Republican president or the current Democratic one, who both won the Iowa caucuses on their way to the White House.

We know how important it is for Iowans to pick a principled conservative to launch the next Republican president. Iowans have a tremendously influential role in deciding who the best Republican candidate is to defeat Hillary Clinton and save this great republic. I will continue to work hard to earn each Iowan's vote so we can forever bury the empty promise of 'Hope and Change' and empower every American to go from 'Hope to Higher Ground.'

 

 Mike Huckabee is the former governor of Arkansas and current GOP presidential candidate. Learn more at HuckabeePledge.com

 

Upcoming Iowa Events

May 14, 2015

Governor Huckabee is returning to Iowa on Tuesday May 19th.  He will host events in Cedar Falls, Johnston, Story City and Marshalltown.

To learn more about and to RSVP for the Cedar Falls event please click here.

To learn more about and to RSVP for the Johnston event please click here.

To learn more about and to RSVP for the Story City event please click here.

To learn more about and to RSVP for the Marshalltown event please click here.

Interested in joining our Iowa volunteer team?  Click here to sign up.

The Sanctity of Life

May 13, 2015

Life begins at conception. This is not just a Biblical view — it is affirmed by modern science and every unique human DNA schedule, which is present at conception. Our value, and celebration, of every unique human life is the basic tenet of our freedom and should never be abandoned.

I personally pray for the day when law matches the science and we support and honor every life from conception. I appreciate the efforts toward the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, which would limit many abortions based on the child’s ability to feel pain, but know that even this is but a step in the direction of hopefully one day protecting every life.

As Governor, I promoted and signed a fetal protection act. I imposed a ban on partial birth abortion, established waiting periods, created parental notification requirements, and passed a bill so mothers who brought a newborn to a hospital or fire station would not be prosecuted for child abandonment.

As President, I will always stand for the sanctity of all human life from the moment of conception until the grave.

If you are pro-life and want a pro-life champion in the White House like Mike Huckabee, please support our campaign today by joining Mike's team here.

The Wall Street Journal

The other day I spoke to Mike Huckabee. He’d announced just the day before. I liked his speech, kind of warmly fiery. He’s under great pressure for not joining the call to cut entitlement spending. But the way he argued for his position cut through, had a certain moral force, and will have plenty of appeal:

“Some propose that to save safety nets like Medicare and Social Security, we need to chop off the payouts for the people who have faithfully had their paychecks and pockets picked by the politicians promising that their money would be waiting for them when they were old and sick. You were forced to pay for Social Security and Medicare for 50 years. The government grabs money from our paychecks and says it will be waiting for us when we turn 65. If Congress wants to take away someone’s retirement, let them end their own congressional pensions—not your Social Security. As president, I promise you will get what you paid for.”

That’s written in a way—you’ll get what you paid for—that might give him room to maneuver as president. Here I note that it is the politician who has a natural, visceral and well-known opposition to something who is best situated to do it and get away with it. Nixon could go to China because he was rather on record as not liking commies; Reagan could raise taxes in 1983 because he hated them, so if he did he probably had to. I suspect it is an amnesty foe who will be best situated to down the road get some form of immigration reform through. Huckabee, viscerally opposed to reform that comes on the backs of the people, and with a reputation as a spender as governor, could be well-positioned to get some sort of entitlement deal through.

From our telephone interview:

What is Huckabee conservatism? “Taxes ought not to punish productivity and reward irresponsibility. That’s why I’m a proponent of the fair tax. Second, that we would turn loose true capitalism but not crony-insider capitalism that dominates the American economy today.” He referred to “the Washington-to-Wall Street axis of power.” He said: “Outside that loop there’s no sense of recovery.”

That sounds pretty populist. Is he a populist? “People say ‘Huckabee is a populist.’ If it means I have a connection to those who do not have any connection to that axis of power than yes.”

What is the American mood right now? “I think the mood is frustrated with a dysfunctional government that is so disconnected with the lives people really live. . . . The economy isn’t in recovery. You need to talk to the people I talk to each day. Their economy is stumbling. No one in Washington cares less about what’s going on in their lives, across all the demographics of race, gender, age, religion.” You see the detachment from real life in the “inane questions from journalists” who obsess on polls and process. “I’m thinking seriously, there are millions out of work, high rent, foreclosures.” It is producing a national “loss of dignity of which Washington, D.C., is not aware.”

What is the biggest misconception about you? That he’s “a big government guy.” He feels he governed effectively “in a hard-core Democratic state . . . with a structure that was far more partisan. . . . A lot of the think tanks that evaluate states have a template that does not account for the political dynamics (in those states), who has power to do what. They compare Arkansas to Texas or California. They’re not applicable.”

I asked if he thought the impact of his popular Saturday-night show on Fox, and his radio broadcasts, might be comparable in effect to the television and radio work of Ronald Reagan. Does he think the impression he made might have a residual power that isn’t sufficiently appreciated? “Gosh, I hope it does.” He thinks it will help protect him from attacks. “One of the things that was very evident was where I was easily defined eight years ago by opponents, now when people throw the nastiest stuff . . . people being polled say, ‘No, I like Huckabee, I see him on TV, hear him on the radio.’”

There’s a “misguided narrative” of the 2008 campaign that says he had only evangelical support. “Where I had most support was working-class people disconnected from the political elite, and some were evangelical and some not.” He sees “disaffected, struggling” working-class people as his natural base. “I wanna be faithful, speak not just to them but for them.”

Are you too kind of Southern/hokey/cornball to get the nomination in a party that after eight years of Obama is feeling tougher, hungrier, maybe harder? You can’t see someone bridle over the phone but I sensed bridling. “What people want more than geography, region or accent is a history of leading. I went into a harsh Democratic environment [as governor of Arkansas] and got 95% of my record passed. If they really want to win they need someone not only with a history of fighting but winning.”

He ended with political philosophy. “Elections are won vertically, not horizontally. Horizontal politics is liberals versus conservatives, Democrats versus Republicans. But the people in the middle who swing the election, they don’t think or vote horizontally. They are not left and right, they are ‘Are you taking me up or down?’ If they see your optimism and record they’ll vote for you. People perceived Obama vertically, not horizontally.”

Read the complete article here.

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As veterans sat rotting in hospital waiting rooms across the country, the Obama Administration spent $8 million to install 7,000 dysfunctional solar panels at a VA hospital in my home state. Today, it’s being torn down to build a parking garage.

This sad tale isn’t about solar panels and parking garages—it’s about priorities. We shouldn’t sacrifice America’s heroes to the “gods of green energy.”