Huckabee’s announcement: “my heart says no”

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee has his own weekend show on the FOX News Channel and tonight he just announced on his show that he is not running for president in 2012.

Huckabee began the program by teasing the audience about his announcement, but viewers had to wait for 51 minutes – -and watch/listen to Huckabee jam with The Motor City Mad Man on “Cat Scratch Fever” (a real medical malady as well as the title of a hard metal hit) — before the “very important” announcement that his “heart is not in it.”

Huckabee won Iowa’s 2008 Caucuses and he would have entered the race as a favorite to repeat.  After  what Huckabee described as “deep, personal reflection,” Huckabee told the TV audience he has enjoyed “strong, growing” support from “rank and file” Republicans. Huckabee sounded for a minute or so like he was going to run — even referencing the support of his family for a second run for the White House, in contrast to the reluctance of Indiana Governor Mitch Daniels’ wife —  but then Huckabee told the audience he had made a “clear and firm” decision not to run in 2012.   Huckabee said he has reached “inexplicable inner peace” about his decision.  Here’s how he put it: “My heart says no.”

After Huckabee’s announcement and show concluded, Donald Trump appeared on the FOX News Channel and Trump said some things in what appeared to be a “live shot”, but none were Trump saying he is running in 2012.

Many of Huckabee’s 2008 campaign stalwarts in Iowa have landed elsewhere already.  Danny Carroll, the former state legislator (the former House Speaker pro tempore, a post that’s akin to deputy mayor), had been co-chair of Huckabee’s Iowa Caucus campaign in’08, but Carroll is now working on before of former judge Roy Moore.  Eric Woolson, the manager/communications director/chief cook & bottlewasher of Huckabee’s ’08 effort in Iowa, is working for former Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty now.  And Wes Enos, Huckabee’s political director in Iowa in 2008, is now part of Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann’s presidential campaign-in-waiting.

Huckabee’s last trip to Iowa was in November of 2010 when he headlined The FamilyLeader event in Des Moines.  During a news conference before that event, Huckabee said he was in a “different position” than he was in the ’08 cycle.

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About O.Kay Henderson

O. Kay Henderson is the news director of Radio Iowa.