Huckabee says Thompson’s position ‘disappointing’ on abortion, gay marriage

Tuesday, November 6, 2007 at 1:54am

Republican presidential candidate and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee hiked onto Fred Thompson’s turf Monday, coming to Nashville after criticizing the former Tennessee senator for being “cut and run” on social issues like abortion and gay marriage.

Huckabee, an ordained Baptist minister, delivered a speech to celebrate Williamson Christian College’s 10th anniversary at Union Station Hotel on Monday night.

That speech, which essentially ended his day, was not a political one. He made no mention of Thompson or any of the other presidential candidates.

Huckabee had already done his politicking. He posted an entry on his campaign’s blog early Monday morning criticizing Thompson for his comments Sunday on Meet the Press.

On that show, Thompson said that although he is against gay marriage and believes life begins at conception, he would not support amendments to the U.S. Constitution that would ban gay marriage or abortion. He would rather leave that decision to individual states.

Huckabee called Thompson’s comments “disappointing and disheartening for those who were expecting him to be a solid voice for conservatives.”

“Sen. Thompson’s philosophy seems to be more ‘cut and run’ when it comes to these issues rather than stand and lead,” Huckabee wrote, adding that he would support both of the constitutional amendments.

Prior to his speech, Huckabee elaborated to local reporters on his comments on Thompson, arguing that the nation should have a defining line at the federal level on whether abortion and gay marriage is “right or wrong.”

“If you think something is wrong, is it more wrong in one state than another?” Huckabee said of Thompson’s federalist stance. “That’s the question. The question is not anything other than if you believe that it’s wrong, does it become more right in Mississippi than it does in Montana?”

Asked on Fox News to respond to Huckabee’s comment, Thompson said he did “not need to justify myself to the governor,” referencing his 100 percent pro-life voting record in the Senate as well as saying Roe v. Wade was “wrongfully decided.”

Thompson returned fire on the former governor of one of Tennessee’s border states.

“Gov. Huckabee talks about this I suppose because it is the only conservative position he’s got,” Thompson said. “People talk about a sanctuary cities — he apparently wanted a sanctuary state in Arkansas. He’s very weak on immigration policy. He was one of the highest taxing governors that we had in this country, rivaling Bill Clinton in terms of the CATO ratings. And getting a D when Clinton got a D and getting an F for part of his administration. So I can understand why he might want to talk solely about this issue.”

The battle continued when Huckabee Campaign Manager Chip Saltsman, a former Tennessee Republican Party chairman, fired back that Thompson’s comments were “absurd” and that Huckabee had cut taxes 94 times as governor and does not support sanctuary cities.

The back-and-forth between Huckabee and Thompson comes as the former Arkansas governor is showing improvement in the polls.

Since Oct. 1, Huckabee has doubled his poll numbers from 6 percent to 12 percent in Rasmussen Reports daily presidential tracking poll. During that same time, Thompson’s support in the tracking poll has dropped from 25 percent to 18 percent.

Parochially, Huckabee has had an upswing of support in Iowa since coming in second in the Iowa straw poll in August.

As he has improved, Huckabee threatens to take away some conservative and evangelical support from Thompson, said Bruce Oppenheimer, a political science professor at Vanderbilt University.

“Support that he can garner is probably disproportionately support that Thompson should like to be able to get,” Oppenheimer said. “So Thompson is probably hurt to the degree that Huckabee looks viable.”

Oppenheimer said Iowa is the state where Thompson should be concerned about Huckabee the most.

Huckabee said Iowa is “looking better and better for us.”

“There are three tickets out of Iowa — first class, business and coach,” Huckabee said. “If you don’t get one of those, you go home freight. So we feel like we’ll still be in the main cabin somewhere.”

In his speech, Huckabee told comical stories from his career in politics as well as relating to the audience through his own attendance of a Baptist college in Arkansas.

Williamson Christian College, which has 75 students and counts 45 graduates, paid Huckabee a “set fee” to come speak, said its president, Kenneth W. Oosting, which he would not disclose.

Oosting said Huckabee flew in by himself on American Airlines on Monday afternoon “cowboy boots and all.”

“He looked like any other person on the flight,” Oosting said. “We thought he’d come in all dressed up.”

Filed under: City News
By: BADCOPS on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Thompson was sure tap dancing around his best friend Philip Martin yesterday regarding his felony arrest.Excuses. excuses, excuse and he isn't going to throw his friend under the bus.Thompson never mentioned removing Martin as co-chair of his campaign.The best friend Philip Martin busted for cocaine trafficking and Thompson thinks this acceptable?Did Thompson take pointers from the Clinton's on surrounding yourself with thugs?The people of the U.S. need someone as President they can look up to, someone they can trust and respect. What has Thompson done for TN regarding the drug trafficking going on here? Ignored it like all the other politicians and law enforcement?This is like the Gore family with their pot trafficking family.These politicians need to clean up their act and clean up their state before running for president.

By: idgaf on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Being involved in a war the abortion/gay rights issues is really little or non-issues that the President has little to do with.27 States already amended their constitutions to forbide gay marrage and a total abortion amendment is highly unlikely to pass anyway.What concerns me about Huckabe is his prior support of amnesty for illegals and his fiscal irresponsible and spending while governer of Arkansas.

By: theplantsman on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Idgaf, “really little or non-issues that the President has little to do with” (!?) As President, he has the power of leadership and recommendation, and even with W. Bush he has the general support of the electorate. Nonetheless, by now you should know that regardless of what any state constitution mandates, all that is required to have those states legislation overturned and declared “unconstitutional” is for the majority of just one Supreme Court to say that it is” unconstitutional” and, BAM, the issue is over. Just look at how many millions have been murdered under Roe versus Wade.

By: theplantsman on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Idgaf, exactly how did then Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee support amnesty for illegals? More so, what evidence do you have to support your claim that then Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee was fiscally irresponsible? I ask this because I have not yet determined who I am aligning myself with.

By: serr8d on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Thompson said that although he is against gay marriage and believes life begins at conception, he would not support amendments to the U.S. Constitution that would ban gay marriage or abortion. He would rather leave that decision to individual states.Essentially correct. Why have 50 states if you can't have some differences between them? We are different, here, than the sodomites in Massachusetts or California. If that's the way those states want to behave, then leave those behaviors at their borders. We don't, in Tennessee or Arkansas or Mississippi, have to be so far leftist liberal as to allow Gay Marriage.We can sell those who do want those things, suitcases.

By: idgaf on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Check on Ralph Briscos site I think he has the fical article on there. He has his own but you might find it/link on

By: Fundit on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Looks like Thompson isn't the true Conservative everyone hoped for. All those years in Hollywood must have gone to his head.

By: vchester on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Huckabee has one large problem, money from Tysons Chicken and support of amnesty for illegals, both tied together very nicely. Plus his name doesn't help.Martin was convicted and served time more than 20 years ago. Just how clean does the staff of a politician need to be. Just curious? Bill Clinton's staff had numerous issues with this, didn't seem to matter then.

By: theplantsman on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Vchester, I pose the same question to you as I did Idgaf: “Exactly how did then Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee support amnesty for illegals?” That he and every other politician in Arkansas have received financial donations from Tyson Corporation does not necessarily make him pro-amnesty. Heck, I am of Arab (Lebanese) heritage but I am not aligned with Al Qaeda or the Taliban. BTW, what is the issue with Mike Huckabee’s name? Has he or his family been involved in some sort of Racketeering or other criminal activities? Again, I am not endorsing Mike Huckabee; I am seeking that evidence that would disqualify him as a Conservative candidate that I could align myself. Anecdotal, slanderous, hearsay (bovine manure) is not what I seek. I leave that to Liberals.

By: idgaf on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Thompson has the same albatrose around his neck that the dems have and that is NO admistrative experience or personal achievements (in government). He also has limited appeal to independents and moderate dems.The issues he champions are not ones that he can deliver on and Guliani already has said he will appoint conservative judges. He has a record of tax reductions increseing revenue and makeing one of the most dangeous cities one of the safest and would draw independants and moderate dems. Fred is vulnerable on the health issue too. By all means vote for him in the primaries if he is your man but be ready to back Guliani or Romney if they win rather then assureing hillary will win by backing a third party that makes promises he can't deliver even if he were elected.Dobson is an idiot that is a legend in his own mind.

By: theplantsman on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Idgaf, I looked on the website under Ralph Briscoe and all it is his biography. Could you be more specific?

By: vchester on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Plant check out this report: are many accounts of his language supporting legalizing illegals.Huckabee HAS supported amnesty for illegals. I for one am tired of my representatives, or those wanting to represent me, treating this as a non-issue.Illegal immigration is the #1 issue in this country, imo, and it will be one of the major decision makers in the 08 elections. Huckabee has a past on this subject that I don't agree with.

By: TharonChandler on 12/31/69 at 6:00

The "Union Station" Hotel is one of the finest early buildings in the USA; a great testament to the persons living and working in the Nashville area (circa 1908, ?). In other news it appears that the race for US President in 2008 is going to be between persons from Arkansas; Honestly I can see why.

By: chakracon on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Huckabee, an ordained Baptist minister? Big deal. Why, in southern states, are white MEN so narrow minded and reluctant to change? Live and let live. How in the hell does gay marriage threaten you IN ANY WAY?

By: idgaf on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Try ralphbrisco.comHe was against voter id's, backed McCain/Kennady amnesty bill and repeatedly said they should accept them into society.

By: wgpugh on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Huckabee's tax hikes were 5 times that of his tax cuts, according to the Club For Growth.

By: theplantsman on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Chakracon thank you for acknowledging that the White Southern males are the primary ones with the good sense and morality to know the presence of evil and reject it. Alternatively, are you just regurgitating the same tired passive/aggressive bigotry that you that choose to engage in homosexuality use to their attempt to make those of moral persuasion “uncomfortable”? Well, you have used that ploy so long that it is useless. BTW, people from all sections and states and the world over despise the evil of homosexuality and those that choose to engage in its practice. Nonetheless, homosexuality along with pedophilia, rape, murder, thievery, etc. is one of the human incarnations of evil, and it is the most profound. Evil, is the threat to humanity and homosexuality is EVIL!If you want more information contact scholars in Persia, China, etc.

By: theplantsman on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Vchester, thank you; I followed the link that you offered and it provided some interesting information. Apparently “Arkansas” is defined as being two-faced double-talker. Regardless, of political party affiliation.

By: idgaf on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Seems like some gays don't know enough to let sleeping dogs lie.They had their vote and lost.

By: MJB on 12/31/69 at 6:00

Wow, this story needs some work: Firstly, the sentence “Huckabee, an ordained Baptist minister, delivered a speech to celebrate Williamson Christian College’s 10th anniversary at Union Station Hotel on Monday night” should read “Huckabee, an ordained Baptist minister, delivered a speech on Monday night at the Union Station Hotel in order to celebrate Williamson Christian College’s 10th anniversary.” The college wasn’t celebrating ten years at the Union Station Hotel, after all. Secondly, “referencing” is an ugly & useless word, barely a word at all: my American Heritage desk dictionary of 1969 doesn’t know it though my Roget’s of 1977 & my Webster’s of 1976 do. Use “referring to” instead. Finally, what does the story mean by using the word “parochially” to begin a sentence. Is Huckabee’s “upswing of support” solely in Iowa? There is no movement in the polls in other states? Wouldn’t the sentence be just as good w/out the detached adverb?