Today another Republican candidate jumps into the ever-larger pile of contenders for the GOP 2016 nomination. Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee is seeking his second bid for the nomination, but this time will be harder for the man who always seems more interested in making money than crafting policy ideas.
Now I grant my readers that between election cycles Huckabee needed to find a way to make money and his stint on FAUX News provided him a nice paycheck. But I have a sincere problem with people making a name for themselves as a candidate and than cashing in with book deals and television shows once the voters soundly reject them. Using the political process for self-promotion so to make money as Sarah Palin and Huckabee have done is unsightly and cheapens our political system.
So that would be my first strike against Huckabee. The other strikes will be delivered from the voters in the primaries.
This cycle there is a number of candidates who will try to split and splinter the evangelical vote in the early states. With the huge number of candidates all trying to please the base there is no way not to understand how Ben Carson, Scott Walker, Rick Sanatorium and Huckabee along with others making their religious pitch will find it harder to find a majority of caucus attendees in Iowa or deeply conservative voters in South Carolina. The ease that Huckabee had in having the evangelical vote fall behind him in 2008 will be much harder for him to achieve this time.
There is a certain appeal that those seeking the nomination will make in Iowa that will not sell in other more broad-minded areas of the nation. The demographics of Iowa are not in any way representative of the nation as a whole. For Huckabee and a number of other candidates that will pose a problem. Since the majority of those who will announce their intentions will be out of the race after South Carolina means that candidates must have a message that can work down the road. Huckabee is too wedded to his religious themes for a nation to listen. Huckabee plays well in only a few limited states.
In the end once candidates are forced to speak to voters in places like Florida and Pennsylvania the moderates of the party–such as they are–will take over and the ‘Huckabees’ can go back to making more money.
This is not to say that Huckabee will not make the race exciting to watch or maddening at times as his stand on so many issues is simply wrong. I am just saying there is no plausible way for the former governor to make serious inroads this cycle towards the nomination.