Sunday, December 2, 2007

Ann Coulter on Candidates at NJC

In a question and answer session at the National Journalism Center, Ann Coulter said there are three key core conservative issues where Republican candidates need to be strong. Those are National Defense, Right to Life, and Smaller Government. She also stated her apparent amazement that Rudy Giuliani is considered a Republican front-runner, when he is clearly not a Right to Life candidate.

She was answering an audience question about who she supports for the Republican Presidential nomination. Her initial response was that she most strongly supports Duncan Hunter, while admitting that he doesn't seems likely to succeed. Coulter also revealed that she's not a big fan of Romney, and described Mike Huckabee as the "new John McCain" (marking them both as lacking firm conservative credentials.

When asked directly about Fred Thompson, she made it clear that she hasn't thought much of the former Tennessee Senator since he displayed a lack of backbone by splitting his own vote during the impeachment of Bill Clinton for perjury and suborning perjury. Even with all that, she did say she would support any of the Republican candidates, "even Ron Paul", over any of the Democrats.

I'm a bit confused by Ann Coulter's take on Mike Huckabee. She and I obviously see either a different John McCain or a different Mike Huckabee. Since she also mentioned John Kerry's flip-flops, I assume her swipe at McCain and Huckabee indicated a perceived tendency to sway with the prevailing political winds. I tend to agree regarding McCain, but not with Huckabee. Is Coulter is seeing something I don't, or have I managed to see something she doesn't?

I do applaud her for continuing to support her favorite candidate, even though it's Duncan Hunter. Not that I have anything against Hunter myself. He seems to be a fine man, and I was considering him favorably until I discovered Mike Huckabee. I think if we would each actively support the candidate we like best, the best candidate would win. I happen to think that candidate is Mike Huckabee.

That same philosophy should prevail when choosing a Vice-Presidential running mate.
I suspect many political strategists will suggest Huckabee choose either Giuliani or McCain as running mate in the general election to "broaden the ticket". Personally, I think he should choose someone whose ideals and performance are most like his own. I think it's that person just may be Duncan Hunter, Ann Coulter's first choice and my second.

Although caustic commentary and hyperbole are Coulter's hallmarks, I've usually agreed with her viewpoints. In the case of Mike Huckabee, I have to disagree. Perhaps she just has a hard time believing one can be conservative without being caustic. Huckabee certainly is a dynamic speaker. He's just not at all caustic. But if I remember correctly, neither was Coulter's idol, Ronald Reagan.

Returning to what Ann Coulter said a Republican candidate needs to be; I think it's beyond question that Mike Huckabee is strong on National Defense, and immovable on the Right to Life. I also think if Ann Coulter will examine Huckabee's record and positions in the fiscal arena; she'll discover Mike Huckabee is also a strong proponent of a smaller federal government.


S.K. Johnson said...

I really liked what you said about everyone supporting who they believe is the right candidate, and that candidate can win. That's a message I've been trying to push for a long time.

What Coulter's referring to with Huckabee is a combination of factors.

1. Taxes: In a recent column, it was shown that he raised more taxes while Governor of Arkansas than Bill Clinton.

2. Immigration: Mike Huckabee attended a Latino Civil Rights convention (the LULAC) and spoke right alongside John Tyson of Tyson Foods (charged with hiring illegal workers), and joking about white men becoming a minority and applauding our country's "open door" policy. He claimed a bill in Arkansas that would deny illegals the right to vote 'racist' and 'unchristian'

3. He supported an enlarged public education system in Arkansas and pandered to the policies of teacher unions.

4. He supported and still supports 'preventetive' healthcare such as food content regulations and smoking bans.

5. He has corruption charges filed against him, including using public funds for a boat, out of town trips...etc...

6. He does not support a constitutional ban on abortion.

Things like that.

S.K. Johnson said...

Oh and the other thing was Huckabee's initiation of ArKids First, an S-CHIP like program in Arkansas, and he failed to raise his hand when asked if he supported Bush's veto of the S-CHIP

Vradic said...

s.k. johnson:
I appreciate your comments and would also appreciate source references.
I have seen satisfactory explanations regarding your points #1 and #5.
As to #4 he does promote preventive health-care, but to my knowledge doesn't see it as the domain of the Fed to actually run it.

I personally wish someone would at least put tobacco under the FDA. Cigarettes are a drug delivery system for nicotine and nothing else.

As to #6, he promotes, and has passed in Arkansas, a sanctity of life amendment. With a person legally recognized a person from conception to grave, abortion automatically is recognized for what it is, the taking of a human life. This by it's nature will lead to elimination of abortion-on-demand, and a constitutional ban on abortion becomes irrelevant.

Your point #2 (on illegal immigration) is the one area where I would really like more source data.

On your #3 ("enlarged public education") he does seem to support more education funding, but at the state level, not federal. I'm pretty sure I also heard him say he doesn't think education should be under federal control.

I do also find his lack of denouncing the S-CHIP expansion a problem. I'd personally like to see an end to all federally funded social programs. They should all be private, local, or perhaps state funded. I'd prefer private/local, but doubt we'll see that day again.

S.K. Johnson said...

I'd be happy to give you more sources.

I appreciate your responses, and am taking them under consideration. I believe there needs to be a decrease in public (whether state or federal) funding of public school, I am a suppporter of a school voucher system.

I was not aware of the life amendment in Arkansas. I agree with that idea. I am a supporter of Duncan Hunter, and he proposed a similar bill in Congress just about at every convening of Congress. Though, I do have a quote from Huckabee that he currently supports a federalist approach to abortion (similar to Fred T.)

On the border:

Here, on my blog, I accumulated quotes by Huckabee on Immigration and cited them to their original sources:

I hope that helps!

I hope you continue to look into Duncan Hunter!

Vradic said...

Thanks S.K. Johnson;
I will definitely take a look.
I also have a great deal of respect for Duncan Hunter, and if Mike Huckabee wasn't running, he would definitely be "my guy", in the race.