Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, victor in the 2008 Iowa Caucuses, called into the Radio Iowa newsroom this morning for a chat. I’ll be posted snippets over the next few hours. Here’s the first question and response to get things started:
Henderson: “What are your thoughts on the 2012 race that you decided not to enter? And you live in Florida, where this race ultimately may be decided. Are you going to remain a celebrity observer, I guess I’ll use that phrase, or will you wind up endorsing somebody before the Florida primary?”
Huckabee: “I don’t intend to endorse anyone before the Florida primary and perhaps not even after, until we settle on a nominee because I want to maintain a level of objectivity. Quite frankly, Kay if I walked in the booth today I’m not sure who I’d pull the lever for. Nobody has so persuaded me that I’m ready to get a yard sign and put out in my yard, so I’m watching and waiting to see, you know, which of these candidates come forth with what I would consider a broad and balanced message and that shows the capacity to lead and not just campaign.
“One of the reasons that I was so frustrated and decided not to get in the race was because it appears to me, and it still does to a large degree, that many of the Republicans are more interested in just defeating Barack Obama than they are in rebuilding America. Well, defeating somebody without a plan to really resolve problems, to me, is a worthless endeavor. You know, I want to see us really focus on how to get the country back to work. We’ve got 15, 16 million people that don’t have jobs that would like to have them. Let’s talk about that, not: ‘Let’s spend our time talking about what’s wrong with one of the candidates we’re trying to defeat,’ and that’s unfortunately been the focus of this primary.”
AUDIO of exchange above.