Slublog was ahead of the curve but credit Stephanopoulos for calling Huck out on his dishonesty. Steph zeroes in on the fact that what Huckabee keeps touting as a merit scholarship program ended up being a simple in-state tuition break. Why let illegals who reside in Arkansas get a break that citizens who reside in Alabama don’t? Because, according to Huck, attending school in Arkansas — for as little as three years, potentially, let’s not forget — makes for a more valid claim on public resources than American citizenship plus 13 years in a neighboring state’s school system does. Huck doesn’t like to mention that meager three-year prerequisite but watch him nod at it here in passing, as he refers to a hypothetical illegal student who’s been in Arkansas schools since he was five or six “or even since he’s 13.”
The second clip is of the obvious follow-up question. I’ve never seen Huckabee speechless but darned if Steph doesn’t stump the band; it looks as though Huck hasn’t even thought about what his policy on this would be as president, which is amazing given the heat he’s taken for it and his many sonorous pronouncements about what his soul won’t let him do. Watch the third clip to get an inkling of how he’s likely to settle on the issue. Because immigration is a federal, not state, issue (or so proponents of non-enforcement always remind us vis-a-vis sanctuary cities), he’ll likely end up claiming he’s obliged to take a harder line on illegals as president than he did as governor — a federalist distinction, irony of ironies. Where that leaves his soul, I don’t know. Perhaps these gentlemen will be able to help.
Update: Robocalls in Iowa going negative on Fred, McCain, and Rudy? Huck says he has nothing to do with it but the group’s webpage is slick. Everyone’s thinking it so I’ll just wonder aloud — did they have anything to do with the anti-Mormon calls a few weeks ago?