My personal favorite Presidential candidate, Duncan Hunter withdrew from the race, and now, has endorsed Mike Huckabee. I don't understand that endorsement. If Huckabee is really as Liberal as the Conservative pundits and bloggers and commentators say, why would the most Conservative of all candidates endorse him?
Duncan Hunter knows Mike Huckabee personally. Maybe we should start with that knowledge and examine the endorsement from Hunter's viewpoint. According to Duncan Hunter himself:
“I got to know Governor Huckabee well on the campaign trail. Of the remaining candidates I feel that he is strongly committed to strengthening national defense, constructing the border fence and meeting the challenge of China’s emergence as a military superpower that is taking large portions of America’s industrial base.
Along with these issues of national security, border enforcement and protecting the U.S. industrial base, I see another quality of Mike Huckabee’s candidacy that compels my endorsement. Mike Huckabee is a man of outstanding character and integrity. I saw that character over the last year of campaigning and was greatly impressed. The other Republican candidates have many strengths and I wish them all well.”
So that is his official explanation. Unofficially? Who knows?
I think we need to be careful when drawing conclusions from anything any politician says. One thing I've learned in my 56 years is this:
You can always tell when a politician is lying. His lips will move.
I'd say that's a pretty good rule of thumb.
I will say this, though:
I trust Duncan Hunter. I believe he is a man of integrity, a man who sincerely believes in his stated principles. I don't know him personally, so I could be wrong.
I heard some interviews with Huckabee and I thought he acquitted himself quite well. He gave clear and logical explanations in response to the various charges against him. He sounds believable. Some of the accusations that have been made about him could well be taken out of context or be misrepresented.
But, once again, I have to defer to the rule of thumb stated above.
Did Huckabee convince Hunter? Or has Hunter seen something in Huckabee that the experts don't see?
What do I think? I am not saying. I've learned another lesson from all this:
If I publicly support a candidate, he will withdraw. I supported Hunter, and he withdrew. Then I reasoned that the next most Conservative candidate was Thompson. Then he withdrew. So now, I'm not announcing who I will support.
I am not sure now, anyway.
So, I will not publicly support any candidate until the Republican nominee is chosen at convention.
If anyone wants to know who I will vote for, you can be assured:
I will vote for whoever I think best represents my principles. I will vote for principle before I vote for who I think will win. At this point, there is no candidate left in the race who represents my core principles, so, I will hold my nose and vote for the Republican candidate.
OK. Update: The New York Times has endorsed McCain. So guess who I won't support?
There's only one thing I know for sure:
I don't know anything for sure.