Letter from War…

January 3, 2008

Dear friends and family,

As the New Year begins and my tour in Afghanistan draws to a close I am daily more and more concerned about the coming presidential election.  Today, more than at any other time in my life, I am encouraged to find a presidential candidate that I am truly excited about supporting.  Sure, I loved Presidents Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and “W”; but Governor Mike Huckabee is really a man after my own heart.

Over the last three decades we have worked very hard to rebuild the Republican Party to reflect the values of the nation’s founders, and to promote a culture reflecting those values.  The future of our nation and our children truly hangs in the balance of this election as none other in my lifetime!

I am writing to you today to encourage each one of you to support Governor Mike Huckabee’s candidacy for the presidential race of 2008!  Mike Huckabee is one of us!  He does not have a platform made up of issue planks that may be pulled up and discarded based upon polling data.  Mike Huckabee has foundational principles and a moral philosophy that will inform every decision he makes in office and those decisions will bear integrity with what you and I hold to be true and necessary for our great nation.

The time is now!  Do not delay to support Mike Huckabee in every way you can!  If we wait, we will lose this great opportunity and in November we will find that we have no candidate for the White House that shares our values concerning the value of human life and sanctity of marriage to mention only two.  I believe it is a Christian duty to support Mike Huckabee and I will not turn away from my responsibility to support his campaign.  I hope that you, too, will stand with Mike and me.

Please consider what you may be able to do.  Contribute what you can.  Write letters.  Email friends.  Work your neighborhoods.  You know what you can do.  Use your imagination!

I don’t know what you can afford to contribute.  I will not presume to make a suggestion.  I simply ask that you join me in a personal commitment to financially support Mike Huckabee in his presidential campaign today!

Let me refer you to his web site.  Go to www.mikehuckabee.com.  You will find many options and information; but please click on “Contribute” and make your best contribution to his campaign.  He is NOT one of the multi-millionaires running for office.  We need your help to pay the freight on this effort.  Will you help?

If you do not mind, just for tracking purposes, include the “Donor Code” R3427 in the box calling for “Donor Code” at the bottom of the required personal information if you make an electronic donation.

I pray you can and will help Mike Huckabee right now to continue this most important campaign for the future of the United States of America.

I pray also that you will make certain your support for other candidates for Congress, Senate, statewide offices and other municipal and judicial races who share our values and will help Mike be the president we need him to be and make the judicial nominations and appointments important to support life, family, and justice in the United States of America in the months and years to come.

We have a great God and a great nation.  I am proud of you and thank you for helping me in the critical personal responsibilities we each have to continue to preserve this wonderful nation for our children.

I am standing on the doorstep of the enemy, but I am trusting God for the victory.

God bless you!


Donor Code: R3427

This correspondence represents the personal views of Terry Hestilow and should not be confused as reflecting official opinion, doctrine, or position of the United States government, the Department of Defense, Department of the Army, Department of the Navy, Department of the Air Force, nor any element, school, or other person, in command or otherwise, in the United States government.  The thoughts expressed herein represent only the personal opinion of Terry M. Hestilow.


In light of Governor Romney’s recent attack ad on Governor Huckabee, Huckamania! would like to point out yet another Romney flip flop. Incredible…
“While at the Arkansas Governor’s Mansion for a meeting about health care, Romney demurred when asked whether a presidential race was in his future but had nice things to say about his host.

“Who knows what the future will hold?” Romney said in 2005. “Most likely, we’ll all stay as governors or find other offices, but we need to make sure that we have a strong person who can take the baton from President Bush, and Gov. Huckabee is certainly one of those individuals. He’d make a fine president.”



Matt Drudge, who manages a conservative gossip website, posted an “exclusive” report today citing “anonymous” Democratic operatives who claim the DNC is not attacking Huckabee because they have a lot of information on him and think he would be the easiest to beat in the general election.

That’s funny…
1) If it were actually a Democratic strategist, what incentive do they have to release this information before the Republican primary? None.

2) It’s particularly funny considering the Washington Post column that cites Democrats on the Record saying Huckabee is “their worst nightmare”

3) Now we find out that Matt Drudge may be a mouthpiece for the Romney Campaign…
Consider that Mitt Romney hired Matt Rhoades as a communication strategist. Rhoades and Drudge are famously close because Rhoades was the source when Drudge broke the Lewinsky scandal story on his website. For weeks now, I’ve wondered why Drudge refused to post anything that wasn’t negative about Huckabee. Now, the connection is more clear. Read about it here: http://blog.washingtonpost.com/thefix/2006/12/romney_continues_dc_staff_raid.html

I am calling the DNC’s bluff. The real reason they didn’t attack Huckabee is because they didn’t consider a threat to get the nomination and didn’t want to legitimize him. Now, they hope they can scare Republicans into not voting for him.

Governor Huckabee has been able to surge in the polls with no establishment support and little money. He has been attacked relentlessly through media outlets. Plenty of people thought they were going to break his “glass jaw” before, and it just so happens that they underestimated Governor Huckabee.

I know it’s the post after my positive pledge, but there’s nothing wrong with a little humor or observation here.

Mitt Romney breaks Ronald Reagan’s 11th Commandment out of desperation and releases the first negative attack of the campaign season in Iowa. The ad calls Huckabee a liberal on immigration.

First, Senator McCain’s campaign condemns the ad:

“News that Mitt Romney will launch a new attack ad tomorrow is another move by a campaign that continues to insult Iowa voters. Iowa families should not be subjected to this negative style of campaigning, especially during the holiday season.

“Governor Romney has flip-flopped on several major issues that voters care about. It’s particularly amazing that Governor Romney would attack anyone on immigration when he’s on his third position. John McCain has run an honorable campaign that all Iowans can be proud of. I call on Governor Romney to drop his plans for this negative attack and follow John McCain’s lead. Candidates need to raise the level of the debate, not lower it.”

Then, to make matters worse for the Romney campaign, the founder of the Minutemen (Jim Gilchrist) endorsed Governor Huckabee today. Mr. Gilchrist echoes the voice of many Americans that want the border secure, rather than empty rhetoric from everyday politicians.

Read about the endorsement here. 

Governor Romney would be wise to promote himself rather than attack the other candidates. Iowans and Americans will not fall for this nasty politics.

UPDATE: I feel it is necessary to make some clarifications in regards to this pledge.  Huckamania! is pledging  not to be involved with negative attacks against Governor Huckabee’s Republican opponents. This is NOT to suggest that we will not conduct the analysis that makes this blog entertaining or defend Governor Huckabee from attacks that other candidates are instigating. If another candidate or entity is attacking Governor Huckabee, it would only make sense for us to explain what effect we think that attack will have and why and to also explain what merits we find such an attack to have.

In other words, pointing out that another Presidential candidate has condemned an attack on Governor Huckabee and that an endorsement likely renders the attack ineffective does not constitute, in my view, negativity on our part. Look at this way: It would be wrong for me to walk into a random person’s house and shoot them unprovoked. However, if that person is shooting myself or my family, I have a right to defend myself.

That is the key difference. Yes, we will still have our unique article headlines, but the content by and large will be free of the negativity which has unfortunately haunted some of our GOP campaigns and supporters.


It’s roughly 4 weeks before Iowa and the GOP is close to uniting behind a nominee.

Make no mistake, I want that nominee to be Governor Huckabee and will do everything I can to promote him. But I will do just that – promote him – not tear the other candidates down.

I am fed up with the negativity of the campaign. I am fed up with some of the Republican Candidates insistence on attacking one another. I’m tired of the hit pieces that conservatives supporting one candidate or another are putting out against the candidates they are not supporting.

While I may disagree with many of the GOP candidates for many reasons, any one of the GOP candidates is better than any one of the Democrats.

Therefore, I am making the following pledge:
I will not compose, distribute, or disseminate any negative attacks on Republican candidates for President in the next month. I will strictly limit commentary on my blogs and personal pages to the promotion of Governor Huckabee as the best candidate for President.

I can make this pledge because I am confident that at the end of the day my candidate will win on the issues. If he doesn’t, then I will be proud to have been part of a campaign that was conducted with honor and will enthusiastically support the Republican nominee.

Governor Huckabee is receiving shots from all sides as his momentum is building. One of the things I admire about him is his refusal to go negative in the face of these attacks.

Of negative campaigning, Huckabee said, “I don’t want to become President because I disabled the other candidates, I want to become President because I am the best candidate.”

I think this refreshing positive politics is what is drawing so many people to Governor Huckabee. It’s certainly what attracted me to supporting Governor Huckabee one and a half years ago.

I leave you with this Governor Huckabee response to a negative question at a rally…

“Over the next few weeks, I’m sure you’re going to see a whole lot of things,” Huckabee told about 400 people gathered in a restaurant in Columbia. “Already some of the other campaigns are getting desperate. They never imagined they’d have to contend with me.”

Then, to huge applause, he said, “It’s not me they’re having to contend with, it’s you they’re having to contend with.”

UPDATE: Huckamania! commends Governor Romney on an excellent speech this morning.

This is a response I wrote to Richard Cohen and should be very relevant to Governor Romney’s speech on religious tolerance today…

I agree that Mitt Romney’s Mormonism should not be a factor in this Presidential race. I also condemn any actual bigotry that exists against Mitt Romney solely because he is Mormon. Bigotry does exist and it exists against Mike Huckabee too. Many people openly brag about not voting for him because he was a pastor or because he doesn’t believe in evolution as a theory of creation (he does believe we evolved, just not that it was the start of the process).
However, I think a much more common form of religious bigotry and intolerance exists not against Mormons, but against evangelical Christians. What makes this bigotry even more troubling is that it is openly accepted and even bragged about by mainstream society.

While it is wrong for people to discriminate against someone for their religious beliefs, it is un-American and contrary to religious freedom to suggest that evangelicals do not have a right to believe whatever they would like about Mormonism. Contrary to the belief of many liberals, no one in this country has a right to be tolerated or accepted by anyone. We must respect others in the sense that we must not discriminate against them in hiring or violate their basic rights, but the notion that we have to accept as valid every idea is absurd! The Southern Baptist Convention (to my knowledge) views Mormonism as a cult. To disagree with a religion and even to view it as a cult is not a form of bigotry; it’s a theological conclusion. To say that we have to have to change our beliefs or customs to accommodate any other system of belief is to violate our tradition of religious tolerance.

Having said that, Huckabee never said that he viewed Mormonism as a cult. He has said his views on Mormonism are irrelevant to being President and he did the right thing by not stirring up a controversy in the evangelical and other communities with his approval or disapproval of Romney’s faith.

Where do questions like these end? Will Huckabee then be asked about his views on Hindus, Wiccans, Lyndon Larouche Supporters, or smaller sects of Christianity. As Mike Huckabee said, the only person who can determine whether or not they are a Christian is the person themselves and God. It’s not Mike Huckabee’s judgment call and the press is unfair to make it so.

What are my views on Mormonism? I’m not running for President so I’ll put them out there. I do not believe Mormonism is a cult. I respect Mormons as people of faith and for sticking with their beliefs even though many people question and ridicule them. And I don’t know who gets to go to Heaven – only God knows that. I am proud to have many Mormon friends, most of whom have join me on the Mike Huckabee bandwagon.

Contribute to Huckabee through Huckamania! 

Many of my friends in the Romney camp have made the argument that all Mike Huckabee is doing by succeeding in Iowa is bringing down Mitt Romney, the only viable conservative to take on Rudy Giuliani. Some have even went so far to suggest that Huckabee, a staunch pro-lifer, has made a back-room deal with pro-choice Rudy Giuliani where Huckabee was guaranteed the Vice Presidency if he were able to bring Mitt Romney down.

The Romney folks are especially desperate. First, they said that voters shouldn’t support Huckabee because, although they liked him, he couldn’t win. Then they told us that Huckabee was really a bad candidate that they don’t like and that supporting him is just hurting Romney – the only one that can beat Rudy.

I’m going to be bold and challenge that assumption.

Maybe, it’s candidates like Romney and Thompson that are helping to nominate Rudy Giuliani by challenging our strongest candidate, Mike Huckabee. I believe strongly, and have throughout the entire race, that Mike Huckabee is the only candidate prepared to take on the pro-choice Giuliani and ultimately Hillary Clinton.


  • Mitt Romney has spent over 7 million dollars in Iowa. Mike Huckabee has spent about 328,000 dollars. The two have roughly 25% in Iowa depending on which poll you believe, with one poll even showing Huckabee ahead outside of the margin of error. This amounts to $280,000 per percentage point for Romney and only $13,120 per percentage point for Huckabee.
  • If Mitt Romney has outspent Huckabee by a margin of over 20:1, it raises serious questions about his electability and appeal to the voters.
  • Mike Huckabee has raised at least 3.3 million dollars this quarter based on his online fundraising alone. Based on Romney’s and Huckabee’s performances in the state of Iowa, that 3.3 million dollars is as at least as effective as 66 million dollars raised by Romney.
  • Mike Huckabee is leading Rudy Giuliani in the latest National Rasmussen Poll. The fact that a Governor from a small town could overcome the name recognition of Rudy Giuliani to be leading Nationally is quite impressive. (see our blog post below).
  • In all of the early states, including Tsunami Tuesday States, South Carolina, and Florida (with the exception of New Hampshire), Huckabee is within points of the lead and early wins in states like Iowa would surely give him the momentum he needs to do well in those states.

The next time someone accuses you of helping nominate a pro-abortion candidate by supporting Mike Huckabee, tell them to take a good, objective look at the facts of the race.

Do we actually think there’s a conspiracy between Giuliani and any of the candidates? The answer is no.

We are rational.

We are simply pointing out the lunacy of the  Romney folks employing liberal tactics out of desperation: suggesting that conservatives are bigots (if you oppose Romney you must be anti-Mormon), name-calling (have you been called an evangelical loonie yet?), patronizing (has anyone suggested you don’t vote  for anything but religion), fear (supporting Mike will just get us Rudy/Hillary), attacks,  and yes, even conspiracy theories.

 The thing that should scare them the most is that based on their own logic: Mitt Romney should drop out now and his supporters should unite behind Huckabee.