12 May 2011 – Mike Huckabee has announced he would not run for the presidency, explaining to his Fox News viewers that the decision was “spiritual”.
Huckabee is a former Republican governor of Arkansas. He did his best to dispel any idea that his motivation for not running were financial, saying he would nonetheless have been a strong candidate.
In the 2008 election, Huckabee found wide appeal among evangelical voters and helped him deliver a major upset in the Iowa caucuses. His candidacy faced a huge fundraising disadvantage and eventually withered, but strong support at electorate level remained with the newsman.
In early polling of the 2012 presidential contest, Huckabee was consistently near the front and enjoyed higher favorability ratings than his peers. His appeal has been particularly strong in the shouthern states and he was undoubtedly a force to be reckoned with.
Former Speaker Newt Gingrich called the announcement “a wonderful example for all Americans of someone trying to do the right thing.” ”Those of us who believe in the virtues and values of life and family can never have enough allies, and I am grateful to Governor Huckabee for helping to keep those issues front and center,” wrote ex-Senator Rick Santorum. ”It is unfortunate that we will not have his voice — or his bass guitar – in the presidential debate,” lamented returning Ambassador to China Jon Huntsman.