Sunday, January 6, 2008

Disappointed in Huckabee

by JMac Politics: Fayette County, Georgia and Beyond

I was disappointed in Huckabee's little jabs at Romney last night. While I haven't made up my mind in the elections yet, I have really liked Huckabee.

As he gains more attention and rises higher in the presidential candidate pecking order it seems his public persona is undergoing some forced changes. Forced because when he strikes out like he did last night it seems forced, it seems out of character and it isn't natural sounding.

The higher he goes the more "experts" are going to be funneling information to him on how he came across, what he needs to do, the best way to address this or that... They are going to force feed him their opinions. "You need to come across stronger." "You need to be more Presidential." "Be sure to get this point in somehow."

The rest of the guys on the stage last night have been through all of this before. Huckabee is somewhat of a newbie in the national presidential arena. He's being buffeted with opinions. He's on the go continually so he's tired and more susceptible to the force of his handler's opinion.

In many ways, the campaign trail is a test of character and mettle. This is where to some degree we, the general public, discover how our future President stands on principals, how they handle tough spots, how they handle stress. If Huckabee is allowing his handlers to change his core then he's not someone I want as President. Among other things, I'm looking for character and strength of conviction, two traits I thought he had in abundance.

Huckabee's likability, his freshness, his difference is something I think has catapulted him from the so-called lower tier into the top cadre of media attention grabbers.

If he is indeed listening to his handlers and they're telling him to attack, he needs to stop listening. If he truly is the kind of guy who spits at his opponents sporadically, then by all means keep doing it 'cause we want to see the real Huckabee.

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