Mike Huckabee: Democrats Think Women Can’t ‘Control Their Libidos’

The former governor enrages Democrats with his comments, but Republicans who heard him speak say no one should count him out for the White House just yet.

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee speaks during the third day of the Republican National Convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum on August 29, 2012 in Tampa, Florida.
National Journal
Adam Wollner
Jan. 23, 2014, 11:19 a.m.

Mike Hucka­bee isn’t afraid to talk about abor­tion and poverty, and he thinks his fel­low Re­pub­lic­ans shouldn’t be either.

In an ad­dress dur­ing the Re­pub­lic­an Na­tion­al Com­mit­tee’s winter meet­ing Thursday in Wash­ing­ton, Hucka­bee, the former Arkan­sas gov­ernor con­sid­er­ing mount­ing a second pres­id­en­tial run in 2016, said Re­pub­lic­ans need to em­brace two key is­sues Demo­crats hope to seize on in the next two elec­tion cycles.

Hucka­bee, a fa­vor­ite among evan­gel­ic­al Chris­ti­ans, said it’s time Re­pub­lic­ans re­ject the Demo­crats’ charge that they are wa­ging a “war on wo­men.” Rather, he said the GOP is fight­ing a “war for wo­men” by ad­voc­at­ing for a less­er role for gov­ern­ment.

“The Demo­crats want to in­sult the wo­men of Amer­ica by mak­ing them be­lieve that they are help­less without Uncle Sug­ar com­ing in and provid­ing them a pre­scrip­tion each month for birth con­trol be­cause they can­not con­trol their li­bido or their re­pro­duct­ive sys­tem without the gov­ern­ment,” Hucka­bee said.

Hucka­bee’s sug­ges­tion that Demo­crats don’t think wo­men can “con­trol their li­bido” im­me­di­ately sparked con­tro­versy, with op­pon­ents de­cry­ing it as an­oth­er ex­ample of the GOP’s in­sens­it­iv­ity. White House spokes­man Jay Car­ney called the com­ments “of­fens­ive.”

But they hardly seemed to both­er most Re­pub­lic­ans in at­tend­ance, most of whom praised the one­time gov­ernor’s mes­sage. 

Some Re­pub­lic­ans want the party to tone down its rhet­or­ic on so­cial is­sues and em­phas­ize eco­nom­ic ones in or­der to ap­peal to a wider swath of the elect­or­ate. But Iowa Re­pub­lic­an Party Chair­man A.J. Spiker said the party needs to go on of­fense in the abor­tion and con­tra­cep­tion de­bate, and that Hucka­bee is a prime ex­ample of how to do that.

“He is a great per­son to de­liv­er that mes­sage,” Spiker said.

Henry Bar­bour, a Mis­sis­sippi RNC mem­ber and neph­ew of former Gov. Haley Bar­bour, agreed that Re­pub­lic­ans can’t run away from the is­sue, but warned the party needs to avoid be­ing “shrill” when talk­ing about it.

“Tone is im­port­ant,” Bar­bour said.

Hucka­bee also said Re­pub­lic­ans should wel­come the de­bate on in­come in­equal­ity Pres­id­ent Obama has called for, ar­guing that poverty has only got­ten worse un­der the Demo­crats’ watch. He called for “a coun­try whose eco­nomy is based on the no­tion that if you are will­ing to work and work hard you can get ahead and it’s not the gov­ern­ment’s boot that’s in your face every time you try to get out of the hole.”

While Hucka­bee isn’t con­sidered to be a front-run­ner for the GOP’s pres­id­en­tial nom­in­a­tion — in part be­cause of his more con­ser­vat­ive stance on so­cial is­sues — Spiker and Bar­bour con­ten­ded he could be a force to be reckoned with due to his af­fabil­ity, com­mu­nic­a­tion skills, and ex­per­i­ence both in of­fice and as a former can­did­ate.

Bar­bour said Hucka­bee is “un­der­es­tim­ated” head­ing in­to 2016, while Spiker called him a “sol­id con­tender.”

He ad­ded, “I just don’t run in­to people who don’t like Mike.”

What We're Following See More »
TAKATA RECALLS COULD TAKE YEARS TO COMPLETE
Airbag Recalls Target 12 Million Automobiles
5 minutes ago
THE LATEST

"The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration identified on Friday the makes and models of 12 million cars and motorcycles that have been recalled because of defective air bag inflators made by Japanese supplier Takata. The action includes 4.3 million Chryslers; 4.5 million Hondas; 1.6 million Toyotas; 731,000 Mazdas; 402,000 Nissans; 383,000 Subarus; 38,000 Mitsubishis; and 2,800 Ferraris. ... Analysts have said it could take years for all of the air bags to be replaced. Some have questioned whether Takata can survive the latest blow."

Source:
INVESTIGATION LEADS TO LEAKER’S RESIGNATION
Secret Service Disciplines 41 Agents Over Chaffetz Leak
36 minutes ago
THE LATEST

Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson says 41 Secret Service agents have been disciplined in the fallout of an investigation over the agency's leak of personnel files. The leaker, who has resigned, released records showing that Oversight and Government Reform Chair Jason Chaffetz—who was leading an investigation of Secret Service security lapses—had applied for a job at the agency years before. The punishments include reprimands and suspension without pay. "Like many others I was appalled by the episode reflected in the Inspector General’s report, which brought real discredit to the Secret Service," said Johnson.

Source:
#NEVERTRUMP’S LONELY LEADER
Romney Talks Cost of His Futile Anti-Trump Fight
2 hours ago
THE LATEST

Mitt Romney spoke in an interview with the Wall Street Journal about his decision to challenge Donald Trump. “Friends warned me, ‘Don’t speak out, stay out of the fray,’ because criticizing Mr. Trump will only help him by giving him someone else to attack. They were right. I became his next target, and the incoming attacks have been constant and brutal.” Still, "I wanted my grandkids to see that I simply couldn’t ignore what Mr. Trump was saying and doing, which revealed a character and temperament unfit for the leader of the free world.”

Source:
CONGRESS DIVIDED ON DEBT CRISIS PLAN
Puerto Rico Relief Stalled on the Hill
2 hours ago
THE LATEST

"A bill to help Puerto Rico handle its $70 billion debt crisis is facing an uncertain future in the Senate. No Senate Democrats have endorsed a bill backed by House Speaker Paul Ryan and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, while some are actively fighting it. ... On the Republican side, senators say they’re hopeful to pass a bill but don’t know if they can support the current legislation — which is expected to win House approval given its backing from leaders in that chamber."

Source:
LAWMAKERS RECESS WITH NO PLAN IMMINENT
Congress Slow-walking Zika Legislation
3 hours ago
THE LATEST

"Congress abandoned the Capitol Thursday for an almost two-week break without addressing how to combat Zika, even as public health officials issue dire warnings about the spread of the mosquito-driven virus with summer approaching. ... Instead of racing to fund efforts to thwart a potential health crisis, lawmakers are treating the Zika debate like regular legislation, approving Thursday the establishment of a House-Senate committee to hammer out differences in their competing bills."

Source:
×