So accuses KLo on the NRO page, and I guess that’s true enough. But might it also be the case that the dividing is also caused by the extreme overreaction to his surging by the mainstream conservative media. The chance of Huck getting the nomination is still very small, and the intensity of the attack his candidacy will surely damage the party in November.
At this point, I agree with the experts, the price of a Giuliani nomination (which is still quite possible) will be a fractured party, and so I think the turn to Romney has lot of reason behind it. (That’s not to say I’m endorsing anyone.) Let’s not also have the price of a Romney nomination be a fractured party.
It’s also true that Mormon-evangelical animosity is surfacing in various places, and that can’t be good for November or even for truthfully recalling how much the two very serious and admirable groups of believers share in common morally and politically. Although I’m not at all defending Huck’s remark in the NYTM article about Mormon theolgy (Mormons rightly see it as a coded cheap shot in their direction), it’s ridiculous to attribute the success of his candidacy to some kind of anti-Mormon bigotry. His positions on the issues really are significantly different from Mitt’s, and his character and campaign have been, in ways we need to remember, intrinsically attractive. (I know a good number of liberals who say that Huck is the only Republican they can stand. And to some Catholics he’s attractive as something like a European Christian Democrat.)
Extreme and often unfair attacks of Huck’s campaign, combined with unflagging efforts to parce every word he’s said his whole life for redneck intolerance, will have the main effect of bolstering evangelical victimology--the belief that real believers are constantly under attack in all directions (even conservative ones) by the politically correct thought police. For the most part, Huckabee’s campaign, in truth, has been upbeat and inclusive and even admirable in its genuine (if sometimes misguided in terms of policy) concern for less fortunate Americans.
Finally, I do think Huck is too evangelical (which is different from too progressivist) to be elected, just as I think that Rudy is too indifferent to the genuine concerns of the evangelicals to be elected. McCain might still be looking better all the time.