by Frank Kaufmann
BY NICHOLAS WAPSHOTT - Staff Reporter of the SunOctober 3, 2007URL: http://www.nysun.com/article/63822
Leaders of the Christian conservative movement who are
considering fielding a third-party candidate rather than
backing any of the top four contenders for the Republican
presidential nomination are overlooking a GOP hopeful who
is steadily gaining support in the run-up to the Iowa caucuses,
A Baptist minister who opposes abortion and gay marriage,
Mr. Huckabee so far has failed to attract sufficient funds or
support to hike him into the top tier of Republican candidates
nationally. But growing evidence that conservatives are
concerned about the choice shaping up in the Republican
primary race, and his increasing popularity among voters
in caucus states, offers the former Arkansas governor
a rare opportunity to become a serious contender.
Mr. Huckabee is the "only dark horse that's got any kind of
chance. … He's the best speaker they've got," Mr. Clinton,
a fellow former governor of Arkansas, told George
Stephanopoulos on ABC's "This Week" on Sunday. Mr. Gingrich
described the candidate on the same show as "very effective. …
If Huckabee can find money, he will be dramatically
competitive almost overnight. You have to like Mike."
James Dobson, founder of one of the largest Christian
ministries, Focus on the Family; Tony Perkins of the
Family Research Council; a direct mail pioneer, Richard
Viguerie; and dozens of other prominent conservative
Christian activists issued a resolution declaring that
"if the Republican Party nominates a pro-abortion candidate,
we will consider running a third-party candidate."
Mr. Dobson said in June: "I cannot, and will not, vote for
Rudy Giuliani in 2008. It is an irrevocable decision. If given
a Hobson's — Dobson's? — choice between him and Senators
Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama, I will either cast my ballot
for an also-ran or if worse comes to worst not vote in a
presidential election for the first time in my adult life.
My conscience and my moral convictions will allow me to
do nothing else."
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