Saturday, September 8, 2007

Huckabee Accepts Thompson's Debate Challenge/Could Iowa And New Hampshire Reaffirm Their Primacy?

Below is the letter with which Mike Huckabee has accepted Fred Thompson’s statement of the necessity for a more in-depth discussion of issues than is presented in shallow 30-second ads and multi-candidate debate formats. You can go to Huckabee’s web site and register your affirmation of the challenge:

How about a series of extended discussions between pairs of candidates, modeled on Newt Gingrich’s suggestion of “Nine Nineties in Nine”: nine ninety-minutes debates in nine weeks. That was a suggestion for the party nominees, but something similar could be arranged for the process of selecting the nominees in the primary process, in the 12 to 15 weeks between now and the beginning of delegate selection.

Maybe Iowa and New Hampshire could enhance their primacy in the process by hosting a round-robin of debates, after each of which Iowa and New Hampshire caucus and primary goers select winners to go to the next round. Here is Huckabee’s web statement and letter, followed by my own endorsement of the idea:

Below is the text of the actual letter to Fred Thompson. We encourage you to co-sign the letter with Governor Huckabee by leaving a comment.

September 7, 2007

The Honorable Fred Thompson
1130 Eighth Avenue South
Nashville, TN 37203

Dear Senator Thompson,

Welcome to the 2008 Presidential race. I look forward to seeing you on the trail in the upcoming days, weeks, and months ahead.

I share your view of the debates and agree that Newt's "Nine Nineties in Nine" concept is a far better way to make sure America's next President has the character and capacity to lead our nation forward, and that's why I have already signed that pledge. I agree that what is needed is a real discussion by the candidates about their vision for the future of our country.

The debates so far have not offered an in-depth discussion on critical issues such as health care, education, energy independence, in addition to terrorism and national security.

I am aware of your comments on Fox News that you would like to participate in a series of Lincoln Douglas-styled debates. I would like to officially accept your offer and look forward to working with your staff to schedule this. I would suggest we start this series in New Hampshire.

At the end of these debates, the American people will know each candidate far greater and would be able to choose which candidate possesses the depth of knowledge on the issues and has the character and capacity to lead or great nation. More importantly, the American people would be able to rely on a true conversation on the issues, instead of just 30-second ads and sound bites to decide which candidate has the right vision for America's future.

Senator, let's lead by example and get the ball rolling. I look forward to hearing your thoughts on this idea and debating you in front of the American people.


Mike Huckabee
Former Governor of Arkansas (1996-2007)


Fred Thompson is absolutely right about the "sound-bite" 30-second tidbits of discussion of issues. Mike Huckabee would like to begin a series of in-depth discussion of several foreign and domestic policy issues. The nation owes Fred Thompson a debt of gratitude for highlighting this need in his entry into the nomination contest. The sooner we can start down this road, the better.


Stephen R. Maloney said...

Larry, you really do a great job of practical politics in action for Mike. I believe he's just as good a guy as you think. He may not exactly be where you think/hope he is on every particular issue, but then again, you may known him better than any other blogger. I've written so long today, mostly in response to your comment, that my arms are tired. I've changed my function somewhat in the Palin effort. I'm going to write a great deal on evangelicals and on the important questions you and people like Lee raise. I might even do a book on the subject if I can get somebody to finance my "travels." I feel strongly that the 2008 election may well go to Mrs. Clinton. But the process of restructurning the Republican Party offers a lot of promise for the future. I'm sorry Treva decided to do her Phyllis Schlafly imitation. :-)



Stephen R. Maloney said...

Actually, I can conceive of a book where I give my earnest insights and someone very much like Larry Perrault (and with same name! and from Houston!) writes critiques. Hey, nothing wrong with a little fame!


Mike will beat Fred like a rented mule. (old Pgh.-area saying)

Larry Perrault said...

People who know me well might not describe me as the standard caricature of an evangelical Christian and I don't wallow in the typical lingo. But I'm sure it sounds that way to some when I say that I don't know Mike Huckabee personally (I've seen him once, years ago when he was governor), but when I watch him I identify with him "in my spirit."

Larry Perrault said...

I know Phyllis Schlafly. I've read Phyllis Schlafly. I sometimes communicate with the TX Eagle Forum rep. I'm not being negative when I say, "Treva's no Phyllis Schlafly."

Now, THERE"S constructive collaboration over dispute!