Huckabee hearts McCain

Mike Huckabee announced his support of John McCain weeks ago, and yet for many, it doesn’t appear as though people actually believe him. Robert Novak reports that “credible activists” have spread the rumor that Huckabee secretly wants Obama to win as some sort of lesson for the Republicans to learn. Not only does this sound ridiculous, but the report appears based on a Virginia evangelical of small national reputation, who apparently believes that Obama would pick better judges than McCain:

One experienced, credible activist in Christian politics who would not let his name be used told me that Huckabee, in personal conversation with him, had embraced the concept that an Obama presidency might be what the American people deserve. That fits what has largely been a fringe position among evangelicals: that the pain of an Obama presidency is in keeping with the Bible’s prophecy.

According to this activist, at the heart of the let-Obama-win movement is longtime Virginia conservative leader Michael Farris — the nation’s leading home-school advocate, who is now chancellor of Patrick Henry College (in Purcellville, Va.) for home-schooled students. Best known politically as the losing Republican candidate for lieutenant governor of Virginia in 1993, Farris is regarded as one of the hardest-edged Christian politicians. He is reported in evangelical circles to promote the biblical justification for an Obama plague-like presidency. …

A vigorous supporter of Huckabee for president, he has not endorsed McCain and may never do so (though he quickly adds that he never would vote for Obama or Hillary Clinton). “I am concerned about what judges [McCain] may name,” Farris told me, “and the test will be who he selects for vice president.” He made it clear that Huckabee would be his choice, and ruefully added, “I understand he is not under consideration.”

Farris denies that he wants an Obama presidency inflicted on the nation as a punishment, but this is almost as silly. He’s concerned about the judges McCain would pick? Has he not considered the judges Obama would appoint? Perhaps McCain doesn’t kowtow enough to the evangelicals, but he supported John Roberts, Samuel Alito, and gave an impassioned defense of Robert Bork when the Democrats derailed his confirmation to the Supreme Court.

Elections are all about responsible choices. Either John McCain or Barack Obama will be the next president. In a general election, not voting for either still affects the outcome of the race. And while legitimate issues exist with McCain, Obama in each of them is worse. Immigration? At best, the two have no differences at all, and Obama shows a lot more concern about “keeping families together” as a principle of immigration policy, which sounds as though we would have the multipliers that helped derail the last comprehensive-immigration plan. Campaign-finance reform? Obama would seize broadcast time and have the government parcel it out and push us towards public financing of elections. Judges? Obama couldn’t even cast a vote to confirm John Roberts, leaving him in the minority within his own party, and wants judges that will keep “social justice” in mind rather than the law.

Mike Huckabee understands the differences, which is why Huckabee supports McCain publicly, where it really matters. Michael Farris can stamp his feet and wish the Republicans nominated someone else, but the reality is that McCain will be one of the two choices in the general election. Responsible voters will have to choose between the two, and for anyone to the right of Dianne Feinstein, it’s not a difficult decision as to which man will make the better President, on the issues that matter — even on those where McCain has angered his own base.