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 Post subject: NJ: Go South, Old Man
PostPosted: Tue May 19, 2015 8:02 am 
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Go South, Old Man

Mike Huckabee hasn’t changed, but the primary calendar has. Now he aims to exploit it.
By Tim Alberta


Subtlety has never been Mike Huckabee's strength. The former Arkansas governor, who elbowed his way onto the national political scene in 2008, owes much of his celebrity to curmudgeonly candor. In an age of electoral misdirection, with candidates cagily masking their intentions and hedging bets at every turn, Huckabee is a revelation; the onetime Baptist minister is famously (often infamously) straightforward in what he's saying, why he's saying it, and who he's saying it to.

So when Huckabee in January released his latest book, God, Guns, Grits and Gravy, and then left his lucrative job at FOX News to promote it (and himself), no overthinking was required. Huckabee was not only preparing to launch a second campaign for the presidency, he was reminding Republican voters that he is more than a socially conservative preacher. He is a "proud son of the South" who can "easily relate to folks from the Midwest, Southwest, and most of rural America." Huckabee continued in the book's introduction: "I feel a bit more disconnected from people who have never fired a gun, never fished with a cane pole, never cooked with propane, or never changed a tire."


If Huckabee's first White House run was seen by Republican voters as a sermon to the religious base of the party, his campaign message this time around is an ode to the forgotten citizens of "fly-over country"—areas ignored, he argues, by the coastal media elites and professional political class of Washington. "Like a lot of Americans, I grew up in a small town far removed from the power, the money, and the influence that runs the country," Huckabee said when launching his campaign from his humble hometown of Hope, Arkansas. "But power and money and political influence have left a lot of Americans lagging behind."

This isn't a re-branding exercise; Huckabee, who first gained national fame for championing the "FairTax," has long wielded a populist message with natural appeal to rural and blue-collar voters. Yet in 2012, it fell by the wayside, partially because Huckabee was pigeonholed as the evangelical champion, but also because Southern states played little role in shaping the outcome of the primary.

This time, Huckabee will return to his roots—an approach deliberately designed to broaden his appeal and, more importantly, take advantage of a restructured Republican primary calendar that places a far greater emphasis on the very states and voters that he has spent his political career serenading. Because for the first time in the modern history of the Republican Party, the path to its presidential nomination takes an early and potentially decisive detour through the South.

As the schedule tentatively stands, following the first four nominating contests in February—Iowa, New Hampshire, South Carolina, and Nevada—the campaign speeds up with a March 1 Super Tuesday dominated by Bible Belt primaries. The calendar will not be finalized until October, but Republican officials expect that at as many as six states—Texas, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, and Arkansas—could wind up voting in a bloc. (It has been dubbed the "SEC primary" after the powerhouse football programs in the Southeastern Conference.) Even if Alabama and Mississippi fail to move their primaries up to March 1, they're currently scheduled to vote just one week later, on March 8, along with Oklahoma. Plus, Louisiana is holding its primary March 5, giving the South enormous influence no matter how Super Tuesday shapes up.

There's no guarantee Huckabee will still be standing after the first four contests; he'll likely need to win either Iowa or South Carolina, or run competitively in both, to remain viable into March. But if he is, the primary swings right through Huckabee's backyard—a reality at the core of his 2016 strategy.

...


Read it all at http://www.nationaljournal.com/magazine/mike-huckabee-2016-presidential-election-primary-20150515

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Post by Peter Liked by: christopher.wilkerson
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PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2015 5:08 am 
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Florida is now winner-take-all (99 delegates) and is holding its primary on March 15!

Read the article:
http://www.politico.com/story/2015/05/florida-quietly-sets-up-an-epic-2016-primary-clash-118075.html?hp=t3_r

How do y'all think this plays into Gov. Huckabee's chances?

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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2015 4:25 am 
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I am uncomfortable with the way the Florida Republican Party has decided to select their candidate. Using a "winner-take-all" approach does not reflect the will of the people, in that state or in the larger picture, since a particular state--a large one--gains an unfair and weighted advantage over smaller ones. The votes of the minority are thus forgotten and ignored later in the national convention. They no longer are in play in the total.

This is the politics that people may find interesting, but others find discouraging or disgusting. It is what motivates the rich to become involved, to become the power brokers. And that is a large part of why we have voter apathy, of why so many people just don't bother to vote. Politics is becoming all power play. And that is not truly representative of the people, or fair. I wish the national Republican Party could rule against this one.

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PostPosted: Thu May 21, 2015 4:38 am 
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justgrace wrote:
I am uncomfortable with the way the Florida Republican Party has decided to select their candidate. Using a "winner-take-all" approach does not reflect the will of the people, in that state or in the larger picture, since a particular state--a large one--gains an unfair and weighted advantage over smaller ones. The votes of the minority are thus forgotten and ignored later in the national convention. They no longer are in play in the total.

This is the politics that people may find interesting, but others find discouraging or disgusting. It is what motivates the rich to become involved, to become the power brokers. And that is a large part of why we have voter apathy, of why so many people just don't bother to vote. Politics is becoming all power play. And that is not truly representative of the people, or fair. I wish the national Republican Party could rule against this one.


That being said, Yes, it will be hard to win against two Florida sons. And it would be nice for the second or third place winner to be able to keep those votes. It will make it harder this time for all the candidates--and more expensive. It does make one a little nostalgic for the days when Marco Rubio was campaigning for Governor Huckabee in 2008!

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