Presidential contender Mike Huckabee has long defended the Constitution's guarantee of religious freedom, and continues to do so on the campaign trail.
Gathered below are eight times the former Arkansas governor and Fox News host took charge on behalf of the faithful.
1. He stood by Kentucky clerk Kim Davis
The Rowan County clerk was released from jail in Kentucky on Tuesday, where she'd been for nearly a week after refusing to issue marriage licenses to same-sex couples. Huckabee was there upon her release, and told a gathered crowd
of supporters that "God showed up, in the form of an elected Democrat named Kim Davis."
2. He stood up for Jews in the face of Obama's Iran deal
"This president’s foreign policy is the most feckless in American history. It is so naive that he would trust the Iranians," Huckabee said in July
. As many in the Judeo-Christian world know, Israel has many enemies, but has a right to exist in a region dominated by Muslims. By capitulating to Iran, Huckabee said Obama "will take the Israelis and march them to the door of the oven. This is the most idiotic thing, this Iran deal."
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3. He is a supporter and patron of formal Christian institutions
— Huckabee knows that strong Christian institutions play a vital role in upholding and evangelizing for religious freedom, and early on in his career he graduated with a degree in religion from Ouachita Baptist University. He went on to study at the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, and continues to support many faith-based organizations to this day.
4. He continues to stand up for life
— Informed by Christian teaching that every life — born and unborn — is sacred, Huckabee has time and time again argued against abortion. Just this year, the former governor was asked about the rape of a young girl in Paraguay, who was later refused an abortion procedure. "Let's not compound a tragedy by taking yet another life," he said in August
. "There are two victims. One is the child; the other is that birth mother who often will go through extraordinary guilt years later when she begins to think through what happened — with the baby, with her. And again, there are no easy answers here. I just come down on the side that life is precious; every life has worth and value."
5. He has vowed to use executive actions to defend military chaplains
Huckabee outlined a plan while campaigning in Iowa this summer to give more freedom to people of faith in the military. Specifically, he said that as president
, he would "Direct the Secretary of Defense to support military chaplains to exercise their faith and not force them to participate in ceremonies they find objectionable on religious grounds. People of faith will not be punished for serving their country and sacrificing to keep us free."
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6. He stood up for Indiana's Religious Freedom Restoration Act
— After a media firestorm this spring, Gov. Mike Pence signed a revised, watered-down version of legislation that would have guaranteed Christian business owners could continue to operate under guidance of their faith. Huckabee decried the move
, saying "the militant gay community put the pressure on" the state.
7. He stood up for the teaching of alternative theories to evolution
— "I do not necessarily buy into the traditional Darwinian theory," Huckabee once told the Arkansas Times
. With that, Huckabee has said that schools should be free to teach alternative theories like Intelligent Design and Creationism. "I don't think schools ought to indoctrinate kids to believe one thing or another," he's said.
8. He stood by Mitt Romney and his right to his Mormon faith
In 2007, Huckabee was asked if he thought Mormonism was a cult. Huckabee was clearly offended by the question, responding
, "I'm just not going to go off into evaluating other people's doctrines and faiths. I think that is absolutely not a role for a president."
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