“You don’t say that the reason you’re not showing up [to debates] is that you can’t handle the pressure or the heat and you might make a gaffe,” Huckabee noted this morning, even if it is somewhat true. Huckabee instead offered a more respectable reason to abstain from debates: “these debates are not covering new ground; we’re not covering new issues.” Perry’s statements, he concluded, were the equivalent of saying, “Gee, this is really hardball, isn’t it?” To Huckabee, it was proof of bad campaign managing by someone down the line.