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Romney Campaign Press Release - ... Discuss Gov. Huckabee's Tax-and-Spend Record

November 30, 2007

FACT: Arkansas Conservatives Have Widely Criticized Gov. Huckabee:

Betsy Hagan, Arkansas Director Of The Eagle Forum: "He Was Pro-Life And Pro-Gun, But Otherwise A Liberal" "Nor am I alone. Betsy Hagan, Arkansas director of the conservative Eagle Forum and a key backer of his early runs for office, was once 'his No. 1 fan.' She was bitterly disappointed with his record. 'He was pro-life and pro-gun, but otherwise a liberal,' she says. 'Just like Bill Clinton he will charm you, but don't be surprised if he takes a completely different turn in office.'" (John Fund, "Another Man From Hope," The Wall Street Journal, 10/26/07)

Former Republican State Rep. Randy Minton Said That Gov. Huckabee's Record Will Turn Away Economic Conservatives. "Also that year, the state grappled with an economic downturn and a resulting budget shortfall. 'Republicans that believe in limited government and lower taxes and fees, they'll look at his record, and they won't be satisfied with it,' said former Republican state Rep. Randy Minton of Ward." (Daniel Nasaw, "Home Turf Not Rock Solid For Huckabee," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 10/4/07)

- Huckabee Has Been Called "A Treacherous Liberal On Taxes, Social Welfare Spending And Illegal Immigration." "Mr. Minton voices the concerns of many conservatives that while Mr. Huckabee governed as a social conservative in opposing abortion and same-sex 'marriage,' he was a treacherous liberal on taxes, social welfare spending and illegal immigration." (Ralph Z. Hallow, "Huckabee Stirs Up Third Party Fear," The Washington Times, 10/29/07)

Phyllis Schlafly Said That Huckabee "Destroyed The Conservative Movement In Arkansas." "Mrs. Schlafly, one of the most respected leaders in the social-conservative movement, has accused Mr. Huckabee of 'destroying' the conservative movement in Arkansas and leaving the GOP 'in shambles.' She says many of the evangelical Christians who 'sold' social conservative voters on President Bush in 2000 are now 'trying to sell us on Mike Huckabee.'" (Ralph Z. Hallow, "Huckabee Stirs Up Third Party Fear," The Washington Times, 10/29/07)

FACT: Newspapers In Arkansas Have Lambasted Gov. Huckabee And His Liberal Fiscal Record:

In An Editorial, The [Arkansas] Leader Called Huckabee "One Of The Most Liberal Governor's In Arkansas History." "His record has been both Huckabee's strength and his Achilles' heel, as we have had occasion to observe. He is one of the most liberal governors in Arkansas history, having accounted for more tax increases than any other and having enlarged state government more than any other. He has exorbitantly inflated his record as a tax-cutter on the stump and now that will catch up with him. But we continue to believe that if he will shoot straight with the Republican constituencies, his record and his moderate views on such things as immigration and government health assistance could make him the party's best opponent to Sen. Hillary Clinton, the expected Democratic nominee. That is not the conventional wisdom, but it will be his best pitch." (Editorial, "Huck Keeps Moving Up," The [Arkansas] Leader, 10/31/07)

Huckabee's Tax Increases Were Mockingly Called The "Tax Me More Fund." "What a banana-splitting riot Gov. Mike Huckabee has conjured with his 'Tax Me More Fund' campaign. Those of us who don't feel we are being adequately peeled by government now are free to send our tax-deductible contributions to the state." (Mike Masterson, Op-Ed, "Bananas And Taxes," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 12/6/01)

- "I don't know about you, but I could hardly wait to get my additional tax dollar in the mail this week. It's becoming increasingly obvious to me, in light of Huckabee's enlightened leadership, that we should acknowledge how we are not being taxed enough in Arkansas today. Why, just this week I found myself complaining to an underpaid Quickie Mart attendant that I didn't feel the 33 cents or so a gallon I am paying for highway construction and maintenance is nearly enough. It certainly wasn't enough to keep us from enjoying the two worst interstates in America, so I left an extra quarter on the counter." (Mike Masterson, Op-Ed, "Bananas And Taxes," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 12/6/01)

Arkansas Democrat-Gazette: Huckabee Is "Economically Illiterate" And Needs A "Refresher Course In Basic Economics." "The time to investigate the wisdom of this tax was before the Guv signed it into law. A refresher course in basic economics might have helped, too. Only the economically illiterate believe that businesses can be taxed without their passing the costs on to those who buy their goods and services--in this case, nursing home patients. To pretend otherwise is to ignore not just economics but human nature." (Editorial, "In Shock," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 6/20/01)

Huckabee Was Widely Criticized For His Record Budgets. "Beware of rosy budgets submitted by governors addicted to easy money. We're not just talking tacos and pantyhose anymore. We're talking about the biggest state budget ever proposed. We're talking billions, three of them and change. And that's just general revenue; it doesn't count those other hundreds of millions Gov. Mike Huckabee apparently wants to raise by going in debt for highways based on federal money to come." (John Brummett, Op-Ed, "Huckabee's Easy-Money Budget," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 11/17/98)

- "For perspective: Huckabee's budget is more like one submitted by Bill Clinton than Jim Guy Tucker. Clinton sometimes overbudgeted, which meant that when tax collections lagged he was required by the Revenue Stabilization Act to order across-the-board reductions in spending levels to keep the budget balanced. Tucker, who governed during periods of growth, was notorious for stingy budgeting that produced end-of-year windfalls. " (John Brummett, Op-Ed, "Huckabee's Easy-Money Budget," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 11/17/98)

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette Said Huckabee's Grocery Tax Allowed The State "To Grind The Faces Of The Poor." "Yes, There have been failures, too. Mike Huckabee has shown a growing weakness for the easy, politically savvy solution rather than real reform. Instead of eliminating the tax on groceries, he fiddled and compromised and finally caved in to the Legislature. And so the state continues to grind the faces of the poor, and the working poor, and just those on a tight budget, every time they buy their bread and milk." (Editorial, "For Mike Huckabee," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 10/29/98)

Mitt Romney, Romney Campaign Press Release - ... Discuss Gov. Huckabee's Tax-and-Spend Record Online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American Presidency Project

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