He hosts a Fox News show, he's a hardcore Baptist from the South, he plays the bass guitar for Capitol Offense, and he'll always be John McCain's "What if?" running mate. He is Mike Huckabee, and if evangelicals have their way, he'll be Mitt Romney's…
Over the past few weeks, Huckabee has emerged as the clear VP favorite among evangelicals and conservative leaders, many of whom are concerned about Romney's ability to mobilize grassroots Republicans.
"Romney’s going to have to have all of the support he can get from his base," American Family Association founder Don Wildmon told Business Insider. "He’s going to need somebody to get evangelicals who didn’t vote four years ago excited and go out to the polls. And Mike Huckabee is the only one who can do it in the way it needs to be done."
In case you wondered what that way is, consider this: President Obama's statement on marriage equality is only the stick that swatted the social conservative's nest. The GOP needs someone to guide those angry "traditional family advocates" (or whatever euphemism for bigoted zealots they're using nowadays) to the voting booth.
Unfortunately for Republicans, Romney's history on gay rights doesn't exactly inspire the "IT'S ADAM AND EVE!" base off their couches. Southern Republicans would be more inclined to mobilize if the GOP ticket had someone on it who was, well, just about the exact opposite of Mitt Romney in nearly every way, starting with not Mormon and moving on to not a carpetbagging Yankee.
Evangelicals are making Huckabee sound like a really good offer…
A conservative VP pick is "exceptionally important," for Mitt Romney, explained David Barton, a longtime GOP operative and prominent evangelical historian.
"Characteristically, it is conservatives that give you all the time and the passion," Barton told BI. "They don’t give much money, but they will walk blocks, they will make phone calls, they will touch all of their neighbors. Moderates tend to give money, but not do the actual, functional work. So you need someone who can bring both sides — you need all the workers, you need the grassroots constituencies, and moderates don’t have that — it takes a whole lot more than just being willing to go out and vote."
Hopefully, Mitt Romney realizes that he'd better listen to this very powerful group or else they might walk blocks… make phone calls… and touch all of his neighbors. Mike Huckabee could be an offer that Mitt Romney can't refuse.
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Tags: Conservatives, Fox News, Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, Republicans, vice president