Mike Huckabee Says He “Hasn’t Closed The Door” On Running in 2012

It was just three weeks ago that Mike Huckabee announced at the end of his weekly Fox News Channel show that he wasn’t running for President. Now he seems to be suggesting that he might not have really meant what he said:

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee foresees a “broke and battered” nominee emerging from the 2012 Republican presidential sweepstakes but says his recent exit from the race is not etched in stone.

Appearing today as a guest of the Clinton School of Public Service, the surprise 2008 GOP presidential contender said he did not entirely rule out running next year when he announced last month he had decided against throwing his hat into the ring. Running as a vice presidential candidate next year or for president in 2016 also are not out of the question, he said.

“Everything is still open. I haven’t closed doors, because I found long ago that that’s not a smart thing to do,” the Fox television talk show host and syndicated radio voice told reporters after a speech at the Clinton presidential library.

So, what is Huckabee saying here?

One way to look at is that Huckabee is realizing that people aren’t paying as much attention to him now that he’s taken his name out of the running for 2012. Opening the door just a crack, by suggesting that he might change his mind and hinting that he’s available for the Vice-Presidency should anyone be interested, guarantees that the media will still write about him. This helps with speaking fees, for one thing.

As I noted at the time he dropped out, Huckabee’s supporters in states like Iowa are going to be hotly contested by several candidates, and his endorsement will be highly sought after. The more Huckabee keeps himself out there, the more valuable that endorsement becomes.

Huckabee isn’t running for President, he’s running for Kingmaker.

H/T: The Pajama Pundit

FILED UNDER: 2012 Election, US Politics, , , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. Murray says:

    “… he’s running for Kingmaker.”

    You mean he’s running for cash.

  2. Moosebreath says:

    “Huckabee isn’t running for President, he’s running for Kingmaker.”

    It’s a shame that he is running against Palin for that job.

  3. A voice from another precinct says:

    In 2008 someone (can’t remember who) suggested that Huckabee wasn’t really ever running to become President, but rather running to become the next Pat Robertson for the Religious Right. The Fox News gig and Doug’s comment here seem to reinforce that idea.

  4. HuckGo2012 says:

    I sure hope he is not running for Kingmaker or for cash!

    I will truly lose faith in this system if that is what comes of all this. I can not lie but I do wonder if this is what is becoming of are political system. It does seem like that is what Palin and Trump were doing.

    But a big part of me feels that they will all end up running and they are delaying to save money! Obama does have a big piggy bank and there are a lot of people in this race that have no name recognition, Trump, Palin, and Huckabee do have name recognition so no need to start spending money yet. They are already a head of the Game in that area!

    I really hope Huckabee does run though! I am positive this time around he can and will win. I was very disappointed a month ago when he announced he was not running. I started looking at other potential nominees, I found some I like but they are no Huckabee. I truly believe if he does not get the nomination republicans are going to have a tough go. He is the only one that has name recognition that can unite the people with a strong plan. Not to mention his debating skills are amazing! It was the 2008 debates that got me excited about him.

  5. A voice from another precinct says:

    HuckGo has introduced another element into the mix. Is it possible that the ol’ Huckster is testing the waters for some sort of thing where the GOPers wish for (and beg him to) enter the race as the “Saviour of the Party”–ala Al Gore in 2004? Hmmm…