Huckabee attacked as he hints at 2016 run for president

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Alex Pappas
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      Alex Pappas

      Alex Pappas is a Washington D.C.-based political reporter for The Daily Caller. He has also written for The Washington Examiner and the Mobile Press-Register. Pappas is a graduate of The University of the South in Sewanee, Tenn., where he was editor-in-chief of The Sewanee Purple. While in college, he did internships at NBC's Meet the Press and the White House. He grew up in Mobile, Ala., where he graduated from St. Paul's Episcopal School. He and his wife live on Capitol Hill.

As Mike Huckabee generates buzz for a possible 2016 campaign, a familiar foe inside the conservative movement is once again attacking the former Arkansas governor.

“In light of former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee’s recent PR blitz, I wanted to re-send our Presidential White Paper from 2008 on his record as Governor of Arkansas,” Barney Keller, a spokesman for the Club for Growth, wrote in an email to reporters on Friday.

The Club for Growth is a fiscal conservative organization. Their “white paper” on Huckabee accuses the Republican of a history of raising taxes, opposing school vouchers and supporting limiting campaign donations.

If Huckabee mounts another presidential campaign, the Club would likely hammer him on these issues — as they did during his unsuccessful presidential campaign in 2008.

Huckabee’s name was back in the news as a possible contender after he announced he would be ending his national radio show, while hinting that he has other projects planned for the future.

“I’m not even close to being ready to saying, ‘yeah I’m going to run,’ but I think that there’s an openness now,” Huckabee told CBN reporter David Brody.

“A lot of it has to do with the fact that I’ve had some incredible encouragement from people that I wasn’t expecting to get it from,” he said. “I think even from people who didn’t support me before.”

Pollster Bob Wickers, who worked for Huckabee’s campaign in 2008, distributed a pair of polls to reporters on Friday indicating that the former Arkansas governor is leading polls of prospective Republicans in both Iowa and South Carolina.

In Iowa, the poll shows Huckabee at 21 percent, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie at 14 percent, Texas Sen. Ted Cruz at 14 percent, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul at 11 percent, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio at 9 percent, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum at 9 percent and Texas Gov. Rick Perry at 5 percent.

In South Carolina, Huckabee led with 24 percent, followed by Christie at 15 percent, Cruz at 12 percent, Rubio at 21 percent, Paul at 11 percent, Santorum at 6 percent and Perry at 5 percent.

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