Mike Huckabee’s Willie Horton?

I like Mike Huckabee. Last year, I found him to be the most personable, charming and authentic of the field of Republican presidential candidates. But I never took him seriously as a presidential contender.
And if the conservative blogosphere is any indication, he is a less serious contender now, with what Michelle Malkin and others are dubbing his “Willie Horton” moment. As governor of Arkansas, Huckabee commuted the prison sentence of the man wanted in connections with the the deaths of four Lakewood, Washington police officers.
Says ultra-conservative blogger Malkin:

The man being sought by police was granted clemency by former GOP Arkansas Mike Huckabee despite his violent history and vehement protestations from prosecutors and victims’ family members.

He was most recently in jail for alleged second-degree rape of a child.

This isn’t Huckabee’s first Horton moment, as I’ll remind you in a moment.

The ugly political ads write themselves.

35 comments Add your comment


November 30th, 2009
5:27 pm

What goes around, comes around. It’s the conservatives turn.


November 30th, 2009
5:35 pm

- I agree with arnold. But there’s no political advantage to
leverage against Huckabee, since as Cynthia said, “he is
a less serious contender now”. In 1988, Michael Dukakis
became the target in the midst of his presidential election bid.


November 30th, 2009
5:35 pm

I like Gov. Huckabee also, but I also think that many more violent offenders will be released under similar circumstances as we are seeing more violence among our citizens and not enough guts to keep them locked up indefinitely.


November 30th, 2009
5:53 pm

Citizen: I think economics more than “guts” determines how long someone will be incarcerated. There is just not enough room in our prisons for all the bad actors we have. I doesn’t matter that Cynthia liked Huckabee in the last election–she could. He never was close. Any conservative that gets close to being taken seriously will incur the wrath of the liberal media Gods. They destroyed Romney in 2008, leaving us with McCain as the lesser of two evils.


November 30th, 2009
6:50 pm


Romney destroyed himself. He was a two-faced liar, tried to distort and run from his own record, and insisted that evangelicals accept his Mormonism as a legitimate expression of Christianity. The last one was big. What motivated the guy to specifically court social conservatives despite having a pro-abortion record AND having tried to run to the right of Ted Kennedy on pro-gay rights? Simple: because he wanted to be the candidate of evangelical Christians. And who came up with the bright idea that evangelical Christians had to accept his religion or else be branded as anti-Mormon bigots? They tried the same thing on evangelical Christians that the left does all the time. Just as the left claims “either you support an ultra-liberal questionably qualified black candidate or you are a racist”, the Romney camp claimed “evangelicals should either back a guy they never heard of with a public pro-abortion pro-gay rights record, or be called anti-Mormon.” Ha!

Had Romney run as a moderate instead of trying to pass himself off as a Reagan conservative, and had he not demanded that evangelical Christians accept him as one of their own, the guy would have had no problem winning the nomination.

Oh yeah, another thing … his hiring his UNQUALIFIED SONS to be his campaign manager didn’t help. Quite the contrary, it was a disaster. His sons were horrible, burning through obscene amounts of cash on strategies that had no chances of working, targeting the wrong states, etc. (It was Tagg Romney who came up with the bright idea of Romney trying to strong-arm and browbeat evangelicals into making voting for Romney a tacit endorsement of the idea that the Mormon Church is a Christian denomination like Baptist or Methodist.) It is amazing how so many conservatives who claim to believe that America is a meritocracy are the very first to practice nepotism and cronyism (prime example, see George W. Bush … amazing how the same “conservatives” who are so outraged over affirmative action contracts with the city and the airport that amount to a few million dollars could care less about the hundreds of billions of crony contracts that Bush handed out). Then again, it isn’t amazing at all.

Quit claiming that the media did it to Romney. He did it to himself. If anything, the media was very sympathetic to Romney’s campaign because A) he passed universal healthcare as governor of Massachusetts and B) his socially liberal background and C) the prospect of seeing evangelical Christians forced to either back someone from another religion or sit out the election, be branded bigots by their own party, and be marginalized as a result. After Rudy Giuliani, Romney was the media’s favorite candidate.


November 30th, 2009
6:51 pm

Joan – “Any conservative that gets close to being taken seriously will incur the wrath of the liberal media Gods. They destroyed Romney in 2008, leaving us with McCain as the lesser of two evils.”

Joan, I love the way you so “innocently” rewrite history. Or could it simply be that you are living in “Neverland”.

If you will make the effort to review the 2008 Republican primary results you will realize that Romney was destroyed by the Social Conservative base of the Republican Party. It is all there in real numbers.

Now if you really believe that the “liberal media Gods” have that much influence on the Social Conservative movement, well now we have a completely new story. That means the Social Conservatives are regular watchers & readers of MSNBC & CBS & read the AJC, the NY Times & the LA Times. Fox’s numbers must be way down in the past year.

Just because

November 30th, 2009
7:20 pm

Not much difference between releasing people like this murderer and putting them in prison for life. The only way to keep people like this murderer from committing more crime is the death penalty which should have been handed down for this man before now. But our society has become whimps; they say people can be rehabilitated; they need a second chance (third chance, fourth chance) and believe it or not the “race card” is often used to justify why they commit crimes and why they should be let go.

Lakeisha Moesha

November 30th, 2009
7:30 pm

I want to give a shout out – Huckabee is a lot better and more prepared to lead our great country. Obama is a disgrace Cindy, an unprecedented disgrace in fact.


November 30th, 2009
8:09 pm

I was thinking the same thing. It works for all parties. Hang ‘em high or lock ‘em up for life. Huck incorporated Christianity into his message too much for me. Why can’t he/they recognize the difference between God and the Father, Son and Holy Ghost?

ck hall

November 30th, 2009
8:40 pm

I know you couldn’t wait to bring down Huckabee and do your racial stuff at the same time..What a a jewel you are and very classy to boot!

Jim Sutherland

November 30th, 2009
9:07 pm

Your characterization of what he did was a little off. He commuted, or reduced the sentence of a guy who was charged when he was 16 years old. He didn’t parole him. Huckabee answered this tonight on TV.

I am far away from him ideologically, but I do believe in fair reporting.

Jim Sutherland

November 30th, 2009
9:32 pm

You also might consider whether this man’s prison experience made him a harder criminal. I think it was Andrew Young who, a few years ago, talked about the results of mandatory tough sentences on young people. Perhaps it wasn’t leniency that is to blame here, but having no alternative to hard core prison for a 16-year-old on the wrong track.


November 30th, 2009
9:37 pm

This is not an isolated instance for the Huckster. His people are doing damage control, but none of it is credible. He should never again be put in a position to cut criminals loose.


November 30th, 2009
9:37 pm

For the record, the slain police officers were with the Lakewood, WA force, not the Seattle department. It’s a terrible incident wherever it hapens, but facts are important, too.


November 30th, 2009
9:59 pm

Huckaby was on O’reily tonight. He did not parole him. He cut in half his sentence of 108 years to 47 years. That made him eligible for parole later. He was given 108 years as a 16 year old. After parole, he violated the parole and was put back in prison. However, he got out on a tech and moved to Washington State. Facts are coming out.

Sunshine and Thunder

November 30th, 2009
10:47 pm

I guess if Michele Malkin is “ultra conservative” then Cynthia Tucker is ULTRA LIBERAL. And that is not a good thing according to the majority of the voters.

mmm, mmm, mmm, Barack the LIAR Obama

November 30th, 2009
11:00 pm

Oh, I’m sure you bleeding heart/anti-capital punishment liberals were all for the pardon, now you see what your misguided morals cause. BTW, the death penalty works – that person won’t kill again.

mmm, mmm, mmm, Barack the LIAR Obama

November 30th, 2009
11:04 pm

Hey, a chance to watch the LIAR in Chief, spin it again tomorrow night, remember?

•Obama Quote: “I will promise you this, that if we have not gotten our troops out by the time I am president, it is the first thing I will do. I will get our troops home. We will bring an end to this war….You can take that to the bank!”


November 30th, 2009
11:27 pm

Liberals actually want Gitmo detainees freed. That is the hypocrisy here. If it were a democrat prez having put them in prison they would be all for it, but since under Bush regime they think the killers/criminals shall be free. But when Ark Gov commutes a sentence for an underage criminal they say nothing until he comes back to haunt society. Hello capital punishment. Goodbye Guantanimo detainees.


November 30th, 2009
11:36 pm

Well, I had my head handed to me, and well done I might add. I guess I am about 97% into the economics that President’s bring to the table, and could care less about their social and religious agendas. I don’t think any of them will require me to slaughter sheep. Frankly, I don’t hear much at any political rally about the socially conservative agenda. I think the Republicans would be better off to be more liberal on that, and just show me (and the rest of this country) the money.

[...] Mike Huckabee’s Willie Horton? Political commentary from Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist Cynthia Tucker of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. [...]


December 1st, 2009
12:30 am

Just another liberal republican


December 1st, 2009
3:00 am

In regards to the 2008 republican debates, all of them were neoconservatives. So basically, liberals who like war. I take that back. There was Ron paul. I think his ideas were superior to all the rest.


December 1st, 2009
6:55 am

If someone is convicted of premeditated murder, and there is no doubt about it, they should be put to death. The sooner the better. There are too many bad people allowed to prey on law abiding folks. How about giving them a one way ticket to Singapore.


December 1st, 2009
6:55 am

You’re right: Facts do matter. Thanks for catching my error.

You Distort, We Deride

December 1st, 2009
7:04 am

All governors make mistakes. However, when a Republican makes them, particularly in the areas of morality or law and order, it exposes their hypocrisy in light of their “family values” rhetoric and their “tough on crime” posturing.


December 1st, 2009
7:33 am

Well, breaking news just came in that the piece of trash is dead now anyway. Hate that he had to take some good people with him before he left…


December 1st, 2009
8:36 am

States should end DEAD ROW……..Police should just kill career criminals on the spot….put an end to “constitutional rights–” to career criminals…….

Chris Broe

December 1st, 2009
8:40 am

Huckabee had to consider 1200 pardons that year, my friends. He looks at criteria that doesn’t include a crystal ball, tea leaves, (ironically), nor Nostradomus quatrains.

This morning on TV, Glenn Beck riffed that we should cut and run from Afghanistan, and he compared Obama to Lincoln. The man should wait until he has his coffee to speak.


December 1st, 2009
8:46 am

Bill Clinton’s FLAN members, and George Soros is such an upstanding citizen that several countries will not allow him to return, so pardon away Bill Clinton, and why not wait till the last day in office so nobody can stop you. And just for all you lefties that think Obozo in charge, how come Soros has been to the White House more than any other cabinet member, Congressman or Senator?

vince neil

December 1st, 2009
8:46 am

FYI to early posters….the Willie Horton issue and ads were originally run by ALGORE’s staff………….

Just wondering

December 1st, 2009
9:05 am

As a teenager, I have a question for the seasoned citizens posting on this blog: If you believe that what the President and other current politicans are doing is wrong, why dont’t you run for office? You all seem to have all the answers here. Oh, why do you all have to be so vile and bitter? You people are scary! I hope I grow up to be a better person that what I see in the blogging world.

[...] Mike Huckabee, it struck me that this could very well be his Willie Horton moment (and I am not the only one, apparently).   Willie Horton was serving a life sentence for murder when he was [...]


December 1st, 2009
12:13 pm

I am glad to see the “affable” Huckster out of the running… we need a true conservative to get this nation back on track. I don’t like “change”.


December 2nd, 2009
7:58 am