HOPE, Ark. — Former Baptist preacher and Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee announced his candidacy for president of the United States on Tuesday, calling for a major overhaul in Washington and the defense of moral values.
Huckabee spoke before a crowd in Hope, Ark., the place where he was raised, and used the location to often repeat his motto of taking America “from hope to higher ground.” He began by talking about his upbringing, and how he remembers being brought up in the ways of the Lord.
“We prayed at the start of each day [in school], and we prayed again before lunch,” Huckabee recalled. “And I learned that this exceptional country could only be explained by the providence of almighty God.”
Huckabee, who now joins Republican candidates Ted Cruz, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson and Carly Fiorina in the race for the presidency, said that he does not like what he sees in Washington, including Barack Obama’s condemnation of Christians while he seeks agreements with Muslim nations like Iran that “chant ‘Death to America.'”
“When I hear the current president say he wants Christians to get off their high horse so we can make nice with radical jihadists, I wonder if he could watch a western from the fifties and be able to figure out who the good guys and bad guys are,” he quipped.
Huckabee lamented the moral degradation of America as well, including the issues of abortion and same-sex “marriage.
“We’ve lost our way morally,” he said. “We’ve witnessed the slaughter of over 55 million babies in the name of choice, and we are now threatening our religious liberty by criminalizing Christianity and demanding that we abandon biblical principals of natural marriage.”
“Many of our politicians have surrendered to the false god of judicial supremacy, which would allow black-robed and unelected judges the power to make law as well as enforce it,” Huckabee continued, “upending the equality of our three branches of government as well as the separation of powers so central to the Constitution.”
He declared that the nation’s courts are not the final authority on moral matters.
“My friends, the Supreme Court is not the Supreme Being and they cannot overturn the laws of nature or of nature’s God,” Huckabee proclaimed, receiving applause.
The former television talk show host who also ran for president in 2008, additionally spoke to those gathered about his desire to balance the budget, pass the fair tax, tackle border control and immigration, abolish the federal Department of Education and upend the IRS, which he referred to as the “biggest bully in America.”
But he added that despite current problems, “[a]s Americans, we ought to get down on our knees every night and thank God that we still live in a country that people are trying to break into rather than one they’re trying to break out of.”
“So, I ask you to join with me today, not just so I can be president, but so we can preserve this great republic, and so someday your children and grandchildren can still go from hope to higher ground,” Huckabee said.