Next week Mike Huckabee visits Capitol Hill, ostensibly to promote his new book. But also to test the mood of potential congressional allies.
The questions are coming fast and furious. Will Mike Huckabee run for president? Could he possibly win? And even if he won, would he have a significant presidency, one that matters?
No one really knows, not even Mike Huckabee, so my answers are as good as any. And my answers are “yes, yes and yes.”
Make no mistake, Mike Huckabee will run, whether he has finally figured that out yet or not.
Oh, I know. He has never had money before and he is pulling in $100,000 a week on the Fox News Channel. Yes, he is building a mansion on the Florida panhandle. He is on 600 radios stations three times a day. If he gives it up to run for president would he get it all back?
Sure he will. It is an easy choice. There are 10 million millionaires in the world and 99% of them will be forgotten. There is only one U.S. president and he is immortal. Besides, Huckabee has all of this opportunity for wealth only because he ran for president last time. The radio stations may come back, a chance to win the White House will not.
But can Mike Huckabee win the nomination and the presidency? Yes, absolutely. He is getting stronger by the day. And making friends and allies across the country by offering them priceless slots on his television show. He is in debate prep weekly by bringing on guests to argue and spar with him. He is learning how to look good and project good on the screen.
Huckabee has already built some of the serious relationships that Trump and Pawlenty have yet to do. And Palin has strangely avoided.
While Palin and Pawlenty have published books about themselves, Mike Huckabee has written a book about simpler government. He takes the basic issues of the day, moral issues, family and foreign policy, offering easy to read solutions. It is Reaganesque, clean and simple.
By waiting to Labor Day to announce, Huckabee risks losing some of the key political activists, people who need jobs. But none of them could do more for him that his weekly television show and endless radio commercials. His greatest risk would be in skipping the Iowa Cavalcade this summer. It could be the launching pad for a new star that will eclipse him and give such a star a head start from which he can never recover. More about that later.
For the moment, Mike Huckabee has the best chance of beating Barack Obama. He is likeable. He is vetted. No new skeletons are likely to come out of the closet. He has problems but they are manageable. He is the frontrunner. He is a born again Christian who will own the delegate rich Southern states. And Obama now owns the second worst depression in American history.
Which brings me to the last point. Almost any president following Barack Obama will be seen by history as a good one. America needs a correction. Economically and in foreign policy. What the world needs now is America light. Menthol. Less tar and nicotine. Mike Huckabee was born for this moment.