Huckabee: Don't Take Syrian Refugees Just Because They're 'Not Living A Very Fancy Life'

In an interview with Iowa talk radio host Jan Mickelson yesterday, GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee falsely suggested that the U.S. is not thoroughly vetting the Syrian refugees it is accepting, saying that unlike Vietnamese refugees who were resettled in the U.S. after the Vietnam War, Syrians are merely seeking U.S. benefits because they are “not living a very fancy life.”

While it is true that non-Syrian migrants have attempted to join the refugees traveling to Europe, the U.S. is vetting Syrian refugees identified by the UN who are living in UN refugee camps.

The U.S. should not let Syrian refugees “get on a plane and send them to the United States and be in a culture that they’re totally unprepared for, and perhaps we’re unprepared for why they’re coming,” Huckabee said.

“This country is willing to take in people who are desperate,” he said. “I remember after the Vietnam War, Arkansas took in an enormous number of Vietnamese refugees. And guess what? Those folks worked their tails off, they learned English, their kids ended up becoming the valedictorians half the time. But that was because they wanted to come to America, they wanted freedom, and they decided that they wanted to be part of this great country. And they have certainly succeeded at that, owning businesses and prospering. But just to say that if somebody is not living a very fancy life and they’d like to come here because we’ve given them free benefits, no, we can’t do that.”

Huckabee: Pope Should Fire 'Elitist' Staffers Who Distanced Him From Kim Davis

Last month, shortly after Pope Francis ended his visit in the United States, the right-wing legal group Liberty Counsel blew up what had been a fairly culture-war-free visit by announcing that the pope had met secretly with its client Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who has been attempting to block her office form issuing marriage licenses to gay couples.

After Liberty Counsel made the Davis meeting into a national news story, the Vatican was forced to clarify that Davis was one of several people who had been brought to see the pope at the end of his visit and that the pontiff “did not enter into the details of the situation of Mrs. Davis and his meeting with her should not be considered a form of support of her position in all of its particular and complex aspects." The only “real audience” the pope granted, it turned out, was with a former student and his same-sex partner

But Mike Huckabee, who says he spoke with Davis about the meeting at the Values Voter Summit, insisted in an interview with Iowa talk radio host Jan Mickelson yesterday that Davis and the pope “visited privately, just the two of them, for about 15 minutes” and that it is “elitist” forces in the Vatican who are trying to downplay the pope’s support for Davis’ cause. Outside of that “elitist world,” he said, people realize that Davis’ case could mark “the beginning of the criminalization of Christianity.”

“Now, why the Vatican is trying to downplay this meeting, the only thing I can figure is that many of the very liberal elements, not only of the media, but in some cases of the Catholic Church want to distance themselves because in their elitist world, Kim Davis is an unpopular figure,” Huckabee said. “But I’m telling you, wherever she goes and wherever I see people, in every airport I get on a plane and people say, ‘Thanks for standing up for Kim Davis.’ It’s very different because people realize that this is the beginning of the criminalization of Christianity if we don’t stand up to it.” 

Scientific polls contradict Huckabee's anecdotal evidence about Davis’ popularity.

Huckabee later suggested that the pope fire the Vatican officials who have tried to downplay his meeting with Davis and paint him as more moderate on social issues: “I’d like to think that at some point the pope might start reading the press clips and maybe fire some of the people who are trying to represent him. I know, as a candidate, if I had press people that were out there misrepresenting my views, they wouldn’t be my press people any longer.”

Huckabee: Obama Only 'Pretends To Be' A Christian

Mike Huckabee said in an interview with Newsmax TV yesterday that President Obama only “pretends to be” a Christian, as evidenced by his invitation of several pro-gay-rights and pro-choice Christians to a reception with the pope this week and the fact that he has, according to Huckabee, made it “very difficult for people to practice their Christian faith” in America.

When Newsmax’s Ed Berliner asked Huckabee about his GOP presidential rival Ben Carson’s comment that there should never be a Muslim president, Huckabee responded that “there is no religious test to hold public office in America,” and that he was more concerned about people like the president whose faith lacks “authenticity.”

“I’m less concerned about what faith a person has. I’m more concerned about the authenticity of their faith and how that plays out in their policies,” he said. “I’m also concerned about a guy who believes he’s a Christian and pretends to be and says he is, but then does things that makes it very difficult for people to practice their Christian faith.

“I’m disappointed if a person says, ‘I’m a Christian,’ but you invite the Pope into your home and then you invite a whole bunch of people who are at odds with the Catholic Church policy. I think there’s something very unseemly about that.”

Huckabee said earlier this week that the president’s guest list for the pope’s visit is another reason why his administration “will go down as the most anti-Christian in American history."

Mike Huckabee: Gay Marriage Ruling Is 'Illegal' Because It Confuses People

As Steve Benen noted yesterday after Mike Huckabee claimed that the Dred Scott decision is still the “law of the land” and is just being ignored by elected officials, when it comes to the implementation of marriage equality, the GOP presidential candidate has invented “his own brand of crackpot civics.”

Huckabee put his made-up civics beliefs on full display in an interview yesterday with the Family Research Council’s Tony Perkins in which he claimed that Kentucky Gov. Steve Beshear could “very simply” fix the situation with Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who has refused to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples, by removing clerks’ names from marriage licenses altogether … while simultaneously claiming that the governor actually has no authority to do so.

This, Huckabee explained, shows why the Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage equality was “so illegal … because this has left the whole country in a state of ambiguity and confusion.”

“The governor can fix this very simply by simply saying he’ll change the form,” Huckabee said. “Now the question is, does he have the authority to do that? And if so, under what authority? This is where this all gets very confusing. And it’s why the haste to rush into implementing same-sex marriage is so ridiculous and, frankly, Tony, it’s why it’s so illegal is because this has left the whole country in a state of ambiguity and confusion.”

Huckabee went on to cite the Tennessee judge who denied a straight couple a divorce this month in a stunt ruling meant to protest the Obergefell decision, which the former Arkansas governor said was just a sign of all the confusion about gay marriage.

“It’s chaos, confusion that’s been created,” Perkins agreed, “and this is just the beginning of what we’re going to see play out here.”

Huckabee then proceeded to roll out some other desparate legal theories about Davis, claiming that she is not required to follow laws that were implemented after she took office and even claiming that she could be guilty of a felony in Kentucky “if she just arbitrarily changes the wording of the marriage license.”

“When she was elected to that position,” He said, “she was operating under the Kentucky constitution that expressly says that marriage is between a man and a woman. … So that’s what she was elected on, that is the job she is doing. And there is a specific statute in Kentucky law that if she just arbitrarily changes the wording of the marriage license, that’s a felony. So here’s the question: Which law does she follow? The ambiguous and unconstitutional judicial tyranny ruling of the Supreme Court that has not yet been codified? Or does she follow the specific constitutional and statutory requirements under Kentucky law, under which she was elected?”

“And I just really am disapponited that some of the people think the way to handle this is just have public officials resign their jobs,” he added, “because they’re going to go ahead and surrender to what Jefferson called judicial tyranny.”

Huckabee: Denali Naming Shows Obama 'Doesn’t Think That There Are Any Limits'

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee is outraged by President Obama’s decision to restore the original name of the country’s highest peak, Denali, after years of campaigning by Alaskans including the state’s Republican senators.

Huckabee told Newsmax TV yesterday that he’d like to see Republicans in Congress block the move and joked that Obama might next want to change the name of the Washington Monument to the “Obama Monument.” The GOP presidential candidate continued his anti-Denali crusade in an interview with Iowa conservative radio host Jan Mickelson yesterday, saying that renaming the mountain is “outrageous” and shows that the president “doesn’t think that there are any limits” on his power.

Huckabee placed part of the blame on Republicans in Congress who, he said, have been indulging the president like a spoiled child. “It’s almost like the child,” he said, “that if you keep on letting him get cookies out of the cookie jar and nobody ever slaps his hand and says you can’t do it, he’s going to keep eating cookies. And this president is going to eat the last cookie in the jar all the way up to his last day in office.”

When Mickelson suggested that renaming national monuments could be a good “opportunity for fundraising” for a president, Huckabee joked, “If I’m president, I think we’ll name the Arkansas River the Huckabee River, why not?”

“This could be how he finances his presidential library,” he joked of Obama, “he sells naming rights to various national monuments all over the country and Mt. Rushmore becomes ‘Mt. Schwartz.’”

Huckabee: Planned Parenthood Like ISIS Because Both 'Take People's Heads Off'

Mike Huckabee said in an interview with Newsmax TV yesterday that Hillary Clinton owes him an “apology” because after criticizing him for claiming that the Iranian nuclear deal would march Israelis to the “door of the oven,” she made an oblique reference to “boxcars” in a recent speech about immigration.

Huckabee also lit into Clinton for saying that the Republican Party’s “extreme views on women” are what you might expect from “some of the terrorist groups. Planned Parenthood, Huckabee insisted, are the ones who are “most like terrorists.”

Saying that the media had applied a “total double standard” in its coverage of his "legitimate and appropriate" Holocaust remark, Hucakbee said, “It was also a double standard when she was talking about Planned Parenthood and Republicans are like terrorists."

"I’ll tell you what terrorists do," he said. "Terrorists take people’s heads off, that’s what they do. Planned Parenthood takes the heads off of unborn children and sells the body parts. So if you want to talk about what is most like a terrorists, is it a Republican trying to save a human life or is it Planned Parenthood murdering human life and selling the body parts as if they were selling parts of a car.”

Huckabee made a similar comparison between Planned Parenthood and ISIS at a campaign stop in Iowa last week.

Andrea Lafferty: Affirming Trans Kids 'The Ultimate Act Of Child Abuse'

On Monday, Andrea Lafferty of the Traditional Values Coalition called in to “Sandy Rios In The Morning” from Bentonville, Arkansas, where the school board was weighing adding protections for sexual orientation and gender identity to its employment nondiscrimination code. (The board ultimately voted against the measure.)

Lafferty told Rios that she came to Bentonville to warn that such a move would “put psychologically unhealthy teachers in the classroom” and ultimately grant legal protections to LGBT students, which she described as a danger. After Lafferty claimed that trans youth experience higher suicide rates because they are “psychologically unhealthy and unstable,” Rios likened affirmation of trans children to affirming people’s porn addictions or extramarital affairs: “We don’t say it’s okay, it’s just the way you are.”

“There are studies, the federal government is funding a study of transgendered [sic] kids, but it’s more to promote it,” Lafferty said. “To me, it’s the ultimate act of child abuse to not try and really help your child through this and to become whole but they are psychologically unhealthy.”

Ted Cruz Fundraiser To Honor Lawmaker Implicated In Child Abuse Scandal

UPDATE: The award ceremony for Harris has been rescheduled so it will not coincide with Cruz's appearance.

The Arkansas Family Council, the state affiliate of the Family Research Council, is set to present an award [PDF] to state Rep. Justin Harris “at the Crawford County Republican Lincoln Day Dinner headlined by United States Senator and presidential candidate Ted Cruz of Texas.”

Harris, whom the group hails as “a strong advocate for home schoolers and the unborn” even “when opposed by the liberal media,” is the same lawmaker who became mired in a scandal earlier this year when it came to light that he had “rehomed” his two adopted daughters with a former employee of his Christian daycare center who later raped one of the girls. As the Arkansas Times, which broke the story about the Cruz fundraiser, reported in its exposé on the scandal, Eric Cameron Francis, the man to whom Harris entrusted the children, has been implicated in two other child abuse cases:

In the interview with KARK last Friday, Harris said Francis left to spend more time studying for a seminary degree and that the parting was amicable. When news of the rape came out in April 2014 and Harris was questioned about his former employee, he told the Times he'd fired Francis for a poor work record. The lawmaker did not reveal at the time the child Francis raped was Harris' own.

As Bethania Palma Markus writes in Raw Story, Harris and his wife sent their adopted daughters to live with Francis after they “feared the girls and had an exorcist ‘cast out’ the demons.” 

Harris, of course, immediately tried to play the victim, claiming that the whole thing was the fault of the government.

We wonder how Cruz and the Family Research Council, the former home of Josh Duggar, feel about the FRC affiliate’s decision to honor Harris with its “Power of Courage Award.”

Family Council Action Committee will award the first annual Power of Courage Award of 2015 to Representative Charlene Fite of Van Buren and Representative Justin Harris of West Fork. Recipients of this award are recognized for exhibiting their Christian faith and values in legislation they presented at the Arkansas State Capitol during the 90th General Assembly. Furthermore, they demonstrated courage by standing strong in faith when situations were tough at the State Capitol and they did so with grace. They are consistently models of their Christian values in their homes, their communities, and their churches. Both state representatives are to receive their award at the Crawford County Republican Lincoln Day Dinner headlined by United States Senator and presidential candidate Ted Cruz of Texas.


Representative Harris is the owner and founder of Growing God’s Kingdom Preschool in West Fork and is serving his 3rd term as state representative. He has always been a strong advocate for home schoolers and the unborn. Even when opposed by the liberal media, Representative Harris has always held firm and stood tall in his faith. No one can deny Representative Harris’ faith has always led him while serving at the Arkansas State Capitol. In 2015, Harris sponsored the Parental Involvement Enhancement Act, requiring parents to be involved in their children’s decision to terminate life by requesting an abortion. This is now law today. Representative Harris will not be seeking re-election.

The award will be presented to Representatives Fite and Harris by Jerry Cox, President of Family Council Action Committee based in Little Rock. “The hardships that legislators go through at the State Capitol are sometimes unknown to the public, and during these times it sometimes takes tremendous courage to stand up for what is right” said Cox. “The Bible often speaks of courage and these legislators have consistently shown courage and taken it to heart.” Cox added. “The courage of these legislators is best described by Scripture in Deuteronomy 31:6, ‘Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.’” “We are proud to present Representatives Fite and Harris with the Power of Courage Award.”

What Mike Huckabee Means By Giving 14th Amendment Rights To Fetuses

Last night’s Republican presidential debate on Fox News featured plenty of disturbing rhetoric about women, from the ridiculous (Donald Trump’s weird ad hominem attack on Rosie O’Donnell) to the infuriating (Marco Rubio speaking out against rape and incest exceptions) to the terrifying (Scott Walker clarifying that he does not support allowing abortions that would save the lives of pregnant women).

But Mike Huckabee took things to a new level when he calmly presented his plan to grant legal “personhood” to fertilized eggs and fetuses.

Some commentators have mistaken Huckabee’s comment as a call for a constitutional amendment to reverse Roe v. Wade. That’s not what he meant.

Instead, Huckabee was embracing a radical legal theory, disputed even in anti-choice circles, that holds that a constitutional amendment overturning Roe isn’t necessary to end legal abortion. This theory holds that the majority opinion in Roe contains a magic loophole that allows Congress to simply declare zygotes “persons” under the Fifth and 14th Amendments, which would then criminalize abortion nationwide in one fell swoop, no constitutional amendment needed. One of the most adamant proponents of this theory in Congress is Huckabee’s fellow GOP presidential candidate, Rand Paul.

Here was Huckabee’s answer to Chris Wallace’s question about his “strong positions on social issues,” including favoring “a constitutional amendment banning abortions, except for the life of the mother”:

Chris, I disagree with the idea that the real issue is a constitutional amendment. That's a long and difficult process. I've actually taken the position that's bolder than that.

A lot of people are talking about defunding Planned Parenthood, as if that's a huge game changer. I think it's time to do something even more bold. I think the next president ought to invoke the Fifth, and 14th Amendments to the Constitution now that we clearly know that that baby inside the mother's womb is a person at the moment of conception.

The reason we know that it is is because of the DNA schedule that we now have clear scientific evidence on. And, this notion that we just continue to ignore the personhood of the individual is a violation of that unborn child's Fifth and 14th Amendment rights for due process and equal protection under the law.

It's time that we recognize the Supreme Court is not the supreme being, and we change the policy to be pro-life and protect children instead of rip up their body parts and sell them like they're parts to a Buick.

As we detailed in our recent report on the personhood movement, this plan is not popular with many of the major anti-choice groups, which have been pursuing a strategy of slowly chipping away at abortion access and the legal protections in Roe, and who argue that a federal personhood bill would backfire bigtime.

But if Huckabee’s dubious legal strategy were to work, the consequences would be enormous. Not only would granting “personhood” to fetuses ban abortion in all but the rarest case where a pregnant woman and a fetus are both in mortal danger, it would put women who suffer miscarriages at risk of prosecution and jail time. The ambiguous wording of such measures has led many to fear that they could also outlaw common forms of birth control.

And the consequences could extend far beyond reproductive rights, as we wrote in our recent report:

By redefining what it means to be a person under the law, personhood measures could also have a broad legal impact on issues unrelated to reproductive rights, threatening to upend everything from inheritance law to census results . In 2014, the Colorado Bar Association opposed the state’s personhood ballot measure, warning that the vaguely worded measure would have “potentially serious, unintended and unknown consequences for Colorado lawyers. … From areas of Family Law to Probate Law to Real Estate Law, as well as the explicit effect on Criminal Law and Wrongful Death statutes, this Amendment could create uncertainty and endless litigation.”

Mike Huckabee’s support for the personhood movement is nothing new. But in declaring his intention to give 14th Amendment rights to fertilized eggs in a nationally televised debate, he gave a fringe movement what may be its biggest stage yet.

Mike Huckabee: Transgender Service Members Will Hurt Morale, Turn Military Into 'Social Club'

In clip of an interview with Newsmax TV that was posted online today, Mike Huckabee criticized the Pentagon’s move to end the ban on open military service by transgender people, saying that openly transgender service members would “affect morale” because “men are men and women are women.”

“The military is not a social organization,” he said. “The military is not a place where we try out experiments. The military is designed to kill people and break things. The purpose of the military is to train a fighting force to defend this country and to fight our battles. It’s not to fight the battles of sexual identity or orientation. It’s to fight the battles that threaten American sovereignty and American freedom.”

He then compared providing medical care to transgender people to elective breast enhancement surgery: “We don’t do breast enhancements, which would be a part of that. If we’re going to do it for somebody who’s transgender, would we not do it for a female who said, ‘I’d feel better about myself if I was a 38D rather than a 34A?'”

The military, Huckabee concluded, is “not designed to be a social club or some type of organization where we help people feel better about themselves," adding, "if there's something that makes it difficult for you to defend this country, maybe the military is not the right place for you."

Huckabee has pledged to restore the Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy for gay and lesbian service members if he is elected president.

Huckabee Urges Governors To Defy Supreme Court Marriage Ruling, Says Marriage Equality Violates The First Amendment

Mike Huckabee, who vows to block the Supreme Court’s ruling on marriage equality if he becomes president, is urging state governors to do the same, telling Iowa talk radio host Jan Mickelson on Friday that if he were still the governor of Arkansas he would “respect” the court’s decision but would not “implement” it.

He urged governors to order county clerks to refuse to issue marriage licenses to gay and lesbian couples “until such time as the people have spoken and affirmed the court’s decision.”

He added that “this is a defining moment for people in public office”: “We’re going to find out how many of them really believe in the balance of powers and the separation of powers and how many just decided they’re going to wave the white flag of surrender.”

Huckabee went on to tell Mickelson that the Supreme Court’s marriage decision actually violates the First Amendment by telling marriage equality opponents that “you can’t believe that anymore and put it in practice.”

“This is going to be about religious liberty, it’s not going to be about same-sex marriage,” he said. “A lot of people will try to make it about same-sex marriage, but it’s a bigger issue because, Jan, if the Supreme Court can tell people what the limitations of their beliefs and practices are, then the Supreme Court has just now decided that it can govern all of our liberties.”

Huckabee also argued that “it’s only a matter of time and not long away” before the court legalized polygamy, for which he said a “stronger case” can be made than same-sex marriage:

Huckabee: If Supreme Court Strikes Down Gay Marriage Bans, 'Everything Falls Away'

GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee told Iowa-based talk radio host Simon Conway yesterday that if the Supreme Court strikes down bans on same-sex marriage, “religious liberty in this country will radically change and it will never be the same again” and consequently all other liberties will fall away.

“The issue, for example, in marriage is really an issue about religious liberty,” he said. “That’s what the fundamental underlying issue, when the government can tell me how much I can believe, if it can restrict my faith and restrict my belief by putting a boot on religious liberty. Religious liberty is the heart of all freedoms, so if the government tells me what I can believe, they can tell me what I can say, what I can do, where I can go, with whom I can associate, they can restrict how much privacy I have. Everything falls away when the government takes away religious liberty.”

Laughably claiming that marriage equality isn’t “an issue that I’ve put front and center” but that the Supreme Court has forced him to talk about it, Huckabee insisted that the marriage case isn’t “about just having people who want to love each other.”

“No, this is not an expansion of marriage, this is a redefinition,” he said. “And when it changes, religious liberty in this country will radically change and it will never be the same again.”

Huckabee, who has vowed to block a pro-marriage-equality decision from the court if he becomes president, added, “By the way, I don’t think the Supreme Court can make a decision about same-sex marriage because they can no more suspend the law of nature than they can the law of gravity.” Such a decision, he said, would not be “the law of the land.”

“Judicial supremacy leads to judicial tyranny, and that’s where we’re headed,” he said.

Huckabee Stands By 'Commonsense' Transgender Locker Room Joke

Former Arkansas governor and GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee stood by a joke he made at the expense of transgender people, telling Iowa talk radio host Steve Deace on Friday that his off-color joke was a “commonsense answer to the insanity that’s going on out there.”

In a speech to the National Religious Broadcasters convention in February, Huckabee joked that when he was in high school he would have liked to have pretended to be transgender in order to shower with the girls in gym class. The comment gained national attention after the conservative website WorldNetDaily posted it on YouTube last month, shortly before Caitlyn Jenner’s introduction in Vanity Fair put transgender rights in the media spotlight.

When Deace asked Huckabee if the criticism of his locker room joke was an example of the media’s “misplaced priorities,” Huckabee responded, “It’s absolutely an example.”

“And by the way, Steve, I take nothing back from that speech,” he added. “I’m kind of glad it’s posted because people, if they watch the whole clip, what they’re going to see is that I’m giving a commonsense answer to the insanity that’s going on out there. Because I hear people, everybody wants to be politically correct, everybody wants to be loved by the media and loved by the left and loved by the elitists. But, you know, I know I’m not going to be, so let’s just get it over with. I’d rather be a commonsense candidate for people who did take their brains to work today.”

Mike Huckabee: Gay Marriage Will Criminalize Christianity by Elevating 'A Lifestyle To The Status Of A Civil Right'

This month’s issue of Billy Graham’s Decision magazine contains, along with a fawning profile of Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal, a “special report” on the upcoming Supreme Court gay marriage decision, featuring panicked interviews with GOP presidential candidate Mike Huckabee and Liberty Counsel founder Mat Staver.

In an interview with Decision, Huckabee repeated his warning that marriage equality will lead to the “criminalization of Christianity,” saying, “When you elevate a lifestyle to the status of a civil right, I don’t think a lot of believers fully understand or comprehend that once it’s risen to that level and our government accepts it, then anyone who disagrees with it could be at least civilly liable, but more than likely would be criminally liable.”

He warned that if marriage equality is legalized nationwide, it will become a “criminal act” for a pastor to preach against gay marriage. Of course, this has not yet happened in any of the states where gay marriage is currently legal, nor did it ever become illegal to preach against interracial marriage after that was legalized by the Supreme Court nearly 50 years ago.

Similarly, Staver warned that marriage equality is an attack on “the very image of God” and urged churches to prepare for civil disobedience in the mold of pastor and anti-Nazi dissident Dietrich Bonhoeffer: “We’re no longer going to just talk like Dietrich Bonhoeffer, we’re going to act like Dietrich Bonhoeffer.”

“To attack marriage attacks the very image of God,” said Mathew Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel and former dean of the School of Law at Liberty University.

“It puts the State in the position of acting as though it knows better than God and, in fact, is the creator, with the ability to redefine God’s natural created order.”

A decision in favor of same-sex marriage would set off an unprecedented avalanche of threats on religious liberties, potentially affecting virtually every church, pastor, ministry and Christian-owned business.

“The implications are staggering,” Staver said.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee warns that it could even lead to the “criminalization of Christianity.”

“When you elevate a lifestyle to the status of a civil right, I don’t think a lot of believers fully understand or comprehend that once it’s risen to that level and our government accepts it, then anyone who disagrees with it could be at least civilly liable, but more than likely would be criminally liable,” Huckabee, a Republican presidential candidate, told Decision during a recent visit to the Billy Graham Library.

“The impact is this: A pastor getting up in the pulpit and proclaiming God’s Word that marriage is the act of one man and woman joining together for life would violate the civil rights of a same-sex couple. … That would make it a criminal act.”

Proponents of same-sex marriage—backed by the Obama administration—say LGBT couples are being discriminated against and deserve marriage equality protections.

Regardless of how the case turns out, Huckabee made clear that the true definition of marriage will stand.

“Even if the Supreme Court rules that same-sex marriage is OK, it doesn’t make it OK because the Supreme Court is not the Supreme Being,” he said. “The ultimate rules for marriage were not made by the Supreme Court, but by God. He is the One who gave us the blueprint.”

Liberty Counsel’s Staver said of the threat to religious liberties: “You’re not going to be able to have your own opinion if it’s a contrary opinion because the force of the police state will require individuals not just to remain silent, but to affirm and promote same-sex unions and immoral sexual behavior.”

[Liberty Institute president Kelly] Shackelford said it will be difficult for churches to follow their doctrine without interference from the government.

“Almost every ministry is going to have implications,” he said. “Every Christian organization and every church is going to find themselves in a situation where they’re going to have to decide, in many cases, whether to follow man’s new law or God’s law.”

Staver said churches, ministries and individual believers must be willing to practice civil disobedience if that’s what it takes to obey God’s Word.

“We’re no longer going to just talk like Dietrich Bonhoeffer, we’re going to act like Dietrich Bonhoeffer,” Staver said, referring to the German pastor who was imprisoned for resisting Hitler’s Nazi regime.

“We have to say we will not move and we will not compromise. We must say that this is a line we cannot cross, not because we want a controversy or a conflict, not because we’re being belligerent, but because it is such a stark assault on our religious freedom and our Christian beliefs that we cannot cross it. We have to render to God what belongs to God.”

Arkansas Kicks Off 2016 Ballot Initiative to #GetMoneyOut

This week PFAW staff joined members of the Arkansas Democracy Coalition to kick off a 2016 ballot initiative campaign to increase disclosure in election spending and support a constitutional amendment to overturn Supreme Court cases like Citizens United. The series of events, including a performance showcasing the story of legendary campaign finance activist Doris “Granny D” Haddock and a march for democracy through downtown Little Rock, culminated with a press conference on the steps of the state capitol building.

Speakers included Paul Spencer of Regnat Populus, a convening organization of the Arkansas Democracy coalition; Rep. Clarke Tucker, a member of the Arkansas state legislature; Rhana Bazzini, an 83-year-old woman who has marched hundreds of miles in the tradition of Granny D to promote campaign finance reform; and Rio Tazewell, the Government By the People campaign coordinator at People For the American Way. 

The Arkansas Democracy Coalition, in partnership with PFAW and other national allies, has submitted ballot language awaiting approval by the Arkansas Attorney General. Upon approval, a signature gathering campaign will launch to collect the 70,000 names needed to get the resolution on the ballot. If passed, the resolution would make Arkansas the 17th state on record in support of an amendment to get big money out of politics.


Huckabee: Better To Have A Gun You Don't Know How To Use Than No Gun At All

At a campaign stop at an Iowa gun range yesterday, Mike Huckabee dismissed concerns about lax state requirements for gun permits, saying he wasn’t very worried about a permit-holder “not being as trained as they could be” because “a good guy armed is still better than a good guy unarmed.”

A reporter attending the event at Crossroads Shooting Sports in Johnston, Iowa, asked Huckabee to comment on laws in Iowa that make it “relatively easy to get your permit to carry” without “actual hands-on training.”

“You know, I leave that to the states,” Huckabee said. “[I have] less worry about someone not being as trained as they could be, because I think ultimately a citizen who is going to arm themselves is going to want to avail themselves of significant training to become proficient. I mean, that just makes sense, for their own sake. But if they don’t, a good guy armed is still better than a good guy unarmed.”

He told the audience that he would hope permit holders would pursue extensive firearms training, “but that’s an individual responsibility, so I wouldn’t try to get in the way of what the state thinks is the right way to go about that.”

At the same event, Huckabee told another questioner that the government shouldn't restrict the ability of people to acquire military-grade weaponsThe comments were caught on video by the conservative blog Caffeinated Thoughts.  



Arkansas Pastor Rips Gov. Hutchinson's 'Total Lack Of Parenting' For Raising Son Who Supports Gay Marriage

Last month, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced that he would not sign a state "religious freedom" bill unless it was changed so that it more closely mirrored the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act. Among the reasons that Hutchinson cited for opposing the bill in its original form was that even his own son has signed a petition asking him to veto it.

On the "WallBuilders Live" radio program today, Arkansas pastor Tim Brooks ripped Hutchinson's "total lack of parenting" for raising up a son who would support marriage equality.

"Our governor came on our local TV stations and said, 'My son has signed a petition for me to repeal this and I, on the other hand feel this way about it,'" Brooks fumed. "And he said on TV, 'This is clearly a generational issue where my son and his generation feel this way, my generation, however, feels this way'; clearly making this a generational issue that Arkansas has got to come to terms with and deal with."

"And Rick, I was appalled," Brooks continued. "I didn't know biblical mandates were generational. I thought there is another case for a total lack of parenting. At somewhere in this line, our governor did not transfer his values into his son's life. When he said, 'I think this way but my son thinks another way,' clearly he didn't parent in morality":

Huckabee: Obama Made Race Relations Worse By Making 'Everything About Race'

In an interview with a South Carolina radio program on Martin Luther King , Jr. Day this year, Mike Huckabee blamed President Obama and then-Attorney General Eric Holder for making things “much worse for race relations” by making “everything about race” rather than declaring racial inequality to be over.

Pastor Kevin Boling, interviewing Huckabee on his “Knowing the Truth” radio program, asked the former Arkansas governor and potential GOP presidential candidate if the country is “more united today after six years of the first African American being in the White House” or if “the president missed a golden opportunity to unite the country.”

“I think, sadly, the president has not only missed the opportunity,” Huckabee responded, “but between the president and Eric Holder, the attorney general, I think it actually made things much worse for race relations.”

“Because when a person is elected to the presidency, it’s kind of hard to say that ‘gee, there’s a glass ceiling for people of color,’” he continued. “I just think it sort of takes that argument away. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t still some racists here and there, or that it’s a view that a lot of people may have. But you can’t say that a person of color can’t make it anymore, because when you’re president, you’ve kind of made it. And when you’re attorney general, you’ve sort of made it.

“But instead of saying, ‘Look, let’s celebrate how far we’ve come, let’s now realize that we can focus on individual achievement and opportunity,’ instead both the president and the attorney general have made everything about race, and as a result, I think it’s taken us many, many steps backward rather than forward.”

Huckabee: Wait To Join Military Until Obama Leaves Office

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee claimed in an interview with Iowa talk radio host Jan Mickelson yesterday that the Obama administration has “an open hostility toward the Christian faith,” and urged prospective military recruits to wait until the end of President Obama’s term to enlist.

Mickelson asked Huckabee about a recent Washington Times story that cites right-wing legal groups to claim that Christians are being discouraged from joining the military because of a “hostile work environment.” Huckabee agreed, calling the supposed persecution of Christians in the military “one of the great tragedies of our time.”

“This administration has had an open hostility toward the Christian faith,” he said. “And I know that sounds like a bold statement, Jan, but when you have a president whose administration orders its chaplains to put its Bibles away, not to pray in Jesus' name, not to counsel people on the issues of sexual morality; when you have this attitude that is more about promoting gay marriage and gay rights in the military than it is about being able to protect religious liberty for those people of faith, it’s going to be hard to find people that are truly devoted people of faith and Christian believers and Orthodox Jews and others.”

“Why would they want to be in a military that would be openly hostile and not just simply bring some scorn to their faith, but would punish them for it?” he asked.

This led Mickelson to ask Huckabee what he would tell parents whose children are considering joining the armed forces.

“There’s nothing more honorable than serving one’s country and there’s no greater heroes to our country than our military,” he responded, “but I might suggest to parents, I’d wait a couple of years until we get a new commander-in-chief that will once again believe ‘one nation under God’ and believe that people of faith should be a vital part of the process of not only governing this country, but defending this country.”

Mike Huckabee: Gay Community Won't Rest Until 'There Are No More Churches'

Mike Huckabee appeared on the Family Research Council’s “Washington Watch” program yesterday to share his outrage that Walmart, among other businesses, came out against a right-to-discriminate bill that was passed by the state legislature in his home state of Arkansas. Huckabee told FRC president Tony Perkins, the host of the program, that the gay community has turned the controversies surrounding “religious freedom” legislation in Arkansas and Indiana into a “phony crisis.”

“It’s been manufactured by the left, just as was the war on women,” Huckabee said. “There was no war on women. The left has gotten very good on creating a crisis, something to divide the country, something to create this sense in which ‘we’ve got to go after these conservatives because they are trying to trample over our rights.’”

He added that the LGBT rights movement is like something out of George Orwell’s dystopian novel “1984”: “It is a classic example of — really a page out of ‘1984,’ when what things mean are the opposite of what they really are. And that’s what I’m seeing here is that in the name of tolerance, there’s intolerance. In the name of diversity, there’s uniformity. In the name of acceptance, there’s true discrimination.”

Perkins contended that gay people who are denied service by a business should simply try to find another shop that will serve them rather than filing a lawsuit against discriminatory business owners. “Where will it stop?” he asked Huckabee.

“It won’t stop until there are no more churches, until there are no more people who are spreading the Gospel,” Huckabee replied, “and I’m talking now about the unabridged, unapologetic Gospel that is really God’s truth.”

Later in the program, Huckabee insisted that unlike the gay community, conservative Christians would never boycott a business like Walmart. Perkins, however, interjected that he does, in fact, plan to boycott Walmart since the company is “taking a stand against religious freedom.”

Huckabee then backtracked slightly, claiming that “it may come to the place where there will be a day in which Christians have had enough of this — I don’t think they have yet, I still see too many of them folding — but there may come a day in which they realize how close they are to losing all of their freedoms. And maybe there will be a day in which every one of the believers of this nation, people of faith and even some people who aren’t necessarily Christian but they’re people of conscience and they’re people of fairness, and they’ll just say that we will have a national boycott of the following businesses, and let’s just see if they really feel that they are taking the right position.”

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