Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee says the Obama administration has adopted what he calls a “Hakuna Matata” foreign policy.
In a phone interview with The Daily Caller, the Republican presidential candidate connected the president’s policies toward the Middle East to the Swahili phrase popularized by The Lion King.
“The whole idea of ‘Hakuna Matata’ is a careless, no worries lifestyle that’s free from any responsibility,” Huckabee said.
Assessing Obama’s foreign policy, Huckabee said: “Many, many disasters of this administration just continue to pile up, culminating in the Iran disaster. Whether it’s calling ISIS a JV team or saying that Yemen was a model for counter-terrorism.”
Huckabee said he “read all 159 pages” of the Iranian nuclear deal and it’s clear the administration “pretty much surrendered everything at the table.”
“We got nothing,” he said.
The Obama administration, he argued, is “rewarding a country that has never kept a deal, that has murdered and kidnapped Americans and financed terrorism all over the world.”
Huckabee said the administration was wrong not to make the release of the American prisoners being held in Iran part of the deal.
“That should have been the good-faith opening ante to come to the table to even begin with,” he said.
“To me, it’s a failure of colossal proportions,” he added.
Asked to describe what he would have done differently, Huckabee said, “I would have done the opposite. I would put more pressure on the Iranians.”
“I would’ve done everything possible to make it clear to them — without their recognition of Israel as a sovereign nation, that they’re unwillingness to release those political prisoners and their continuation to say their policy was death to the America — not only would there be no launching of talks, but we would increase the sanctions, we would make it more difficult for them,” he said.
As for his own foreign policy, Huckabee called for “expanding, exploring, exploiting and exporting our own energy” inside the United States.
“We would then disrupt the power of the three most troublesome nations that right now have a big role in the Middle East: Russia, the Saudis, and the Iranians,” he said. “If we became the exporter of energy to Africa and Asia, instead of allowing Russia, Iran and the Saudis to do it, we’d then change the balance of power, making it more difficult for Putin to fund his efforts into Crimea and God knows where else.”
“We’d certainly make it more difficult for the Iranians to have the funds to continue their nuclear program, much less continue to fund terrorist activities. And we’d also make it more difficult for the Saudis to keep funding madrassas that train terrorists to fly airplanes into our buildings,” he said.
Domestically, Huckabee said accelerating energy at home would also create jobs and make “energy prices less expensive for the single mom whose taking her kids to daycare and work everyday.”
“By lowering gasoline prices for her, we give her a pay-raise,” he said.
Attempting to draw attention to his views on the Iranian deal, Huckabee’s campaign released a short Vine video Tuesday that shows a clip from The Lion King. It also shows a nuclear bomb detonating and text that says: “‘Hakuna Matata’ is not a strategy. Reject evil. Stop Iran.”
“We felt like it was a great kind of almost cartoonish way to depict the Obama administration’s foreign policy,” Huckabee explained in the interview, “which is one of free from responsibility, no worries.”