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Tax Hike Mike Returns

(Above: a 2007 ClubforGrowth.Net ad on Huckabee’s Record)

Well folks, it looks like Mike Huckabee is going to actually run for President again.

As many of you know, the Club for Growth has always done a sober and very thorough analysis of the economic records of all the Presidential candidates running for office. We intend to do so again for the 2016 cycle and our research team is already hard at work on them in our headquarters in Washington. You can read all of the previous “white papers” by clicking here.

Because he ran so long ago, I thought it was time for a little reminder to fiscal conservatives about Mike Huckabee’s very liberal record that we uncovered when the Club for Growth went through this process back in 2007. The following are some plain and simple facts, none of which he has ever refuted.

In 2008, the Club’s paper on Mike Huckabee’s record as Governor of Arkansas found, among other things:

  • Huckabee raised sales taxes repeatedly, supported an internet sales tax, and backed taxes on groceries, gasoline, cigarettes, and nursing homes.
  • Huckabee increased state spending by 65.3%, at three times the rate of inflation. The number of state government workers increased by 20%.
  • Huckabee refused to endorse President Bush’s veto of the massively expensive SCHIP program.
  • Huckabee raised the minimum wage and threatened to investigate so-called “price gouging” if gasoline prices went up.
  • Huckabee is on record opposing school vouchers.
  • Huckabee is on record favoring limiting campaign contributions to candidates.

Huckabee, will, of course, say lots of things in response to these simple facts. He will launch into attacks on his critics without rebutting a single one of their claims (I expect he will respond to this post by attacking me — which is fine — I hope neither of us become President). He will whine and moan about how conservative groups like the Club for Growth are destroying the Republican Party. He’s actually a little obsessed with the Club. He has a history of endorsing candidates for office…just because their opponent is endorsed by the Club for Growth PAC. For example: when most conservatives, including the Red State community, were endorsing Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX)Heritage ActionScorecardSen. Ted Cruz95%Senate Republican Average29See Full Scorecard95% for the U.S. Senate in 2012, Mike Huckabee was out cutting ads for David Dewhurst.  Of course, it’s not like Huckabee is willing to endorse candidates out of the goodness of his heart — he routinely makes Republican candidates reimburse him for the cost of a private plane to carry him to their events.

In a year in which the Republican Party may have not just one, but perhaps even more than one good, pro-growth conservatives running for President, it makes no sense to have a Republican who once stated that “the line between capitalism and greed has to be very clearly delineated” and criticized Mitt Romney’s record of creating jobs at Bain Capital as our nominee. Rhetoric like that is better suited for the Democrat primary.

It’s precisely this type of class warfare that President Obama uses to promote his latest round of job crushing tax increases. We’d all be better off if Mike Huckabee spent less time embracing the language of President Obama and the left and more time supporting champions of economic freedom for office.

David McIntosh
President, Club for Growth

 

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