Michael Dale "Mike" Huckabee (born August 24, 1955) is an American politician who served as the 44th Governor of Arkansas from 1996 to 2007. He was a candidate in the 2008 United States Republican presidential primaries, finishing second in delegate count and third in both popular vote and number of states won (behind both John McCain and Mitt Romney). He won the Iowa Republican caucuses. Huckabee exited the race as McCain became the presumptive Republican nominee after winning the delegate-rich winner-take-all states of Florida, California, and New York.
Huckabee is the author of several best selling books, an ordained Southern Baptist minister, musician and a public speaker. He is also an ABC Radio political commentator. He and his wife, Janet, have been married for over 37 years and have three grown children: John Mark, David, and Sarah. Janet Huckabee was an unsuccessful candidate for Arkansas Secretary of State in 2002.
Huckabee currently hosts the Fox News Channel talk show Huckabee. Starting April 2, 2012 he will host The Mike Huckabee Show from noon until 3 pm weekdays for Cumulus Media Networks.
At 21, Huckabee was a staffer for James Robison, a television evangelist. Robison commented, "His convictions shape his character and his character will shape his policies. His whole life has been shaped by moral absolutes." Huckabee has stated, "Politics are totally directed by worldview. That's why when people say, 'We ought to separate politics from religion,' I say to separate the two is absolutely impossible". Prior to his political career, Huckabee served as pastor at Immanuel Baptist Church in Pine Bluff, Arkansas from 1980 to 1986 and the Beech Street Baptist Church in Texarkana from 1986 to 1992. In both Texarkana and Pine Bluff Huckabee started 24-hour television stations "where he produced documentaries and hosted a program called Positive Alternatives. He encouraged the all-white Immanuel Baptist Church to accept black members in the mid 1980s. He served as president of a religion-oriented television station. In 1989 Huckabee ran against the Rev. Dr. Ronnie Floyd of Springdale for the presidency of the Arkansas Baptist State Convention. Huckabee won and served as president from 1989 to 1991.
Huckabee announced his run for the White House on Meet the Press on January 28, 2007.
At the August 11 Iowa Straw Poll, Huckabee took second place with 2,587 votes, roughly 18 percent, splitting the conservative Republican party votes amongst other candidates. Huckabee spent $57.98 per vote in the Straw Poll, which is the lowest among the top three finishers. Huckabee drew attention with an unconventional ad featuring Chuck Norris. In a later ad Huckabee wished voters a merry Christmas, and said that "what really matters is the celebration of the birth of Christ." In a replay of his past speeches to other conservative Christian organizations such as the CofCC, some critics accused him being right-wing Christian, and it appeared he might back-pedal as he did with the CofCC. However, rather than repudiate his speech he merely denied it was politically incorrect. This lack of defense of his issues before conservative and Christian organizations caused several media outlets to pursue his past speeches. One such questioning asked Huckabee to deny or defend his position regarding America being a historically Christian Nation. According to the Associated Press, on NBC's Meet The Press on December 31, 2007, Huckabee "stood by" a 1998 comment in which he said, "I hope we answer the alarm clock and take this nation back for Christ." Huckabee told NBC that his comment was not politically incorrect and was "appropriate to be said to a gathering of Southern Baptists." Huckabee has credited God with some of his political success