While former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee has been moving up in presidential polls, the Republican has failed to impress the editors at National Review.
“Unfortunately, what Huckabee offers by way of solutions [to domestic issues] is a mixture of populism and big-government liberalism; the common theme of his policies is that they are halfbaked,” the conservative magazine said in a Nov. 19 editorial at NationalReview. com.
“If an ill-considered slogan can be used to justify a policy, he is for it. He is a protectionist, because we need to have ‘fair trade.’ He wants to put illegal immigrants on a path to citizenship, because we need them ‘to do jobs that are going unfilled because nobody here wants to do them.’ Energy subsidies and farm subsidies must be increased, because they’re a matter of ‘national security.’
“When he was governor of Arkansas, these instincts led Huckabee to move farther and farther in a statist direction. (Education policy offers a nice example of what happens when his statism and his social conservatism conflict: He opposes meaningful school choice.) The Cato Institute gave him a D on fiscal policy, noting that spending had increased at three times the rate of inflation during his governorship. Not surprisingly, Huckabee is the one Republican candidate who flinched when President Bush vetoed the Democrats’ proposed expansion of SCHIP. He says he is against socialized medicine, but don’t look for him to resist the drift toward it.”