Saturday, December 08, 2007

Two O's In Iowa; Huckabee's Skeletons

Rousing Speech Makes Case Against "Washington Experience"
Homosexuality: "Aberrant, Unnatural"
In '92, advocated "isolating" AIDS patients

Talk show superstar Oprah Winfrey rallied for Barack Obama in Des Moines, Iowa Saturday in front of an estimated crowd of more than 20-thousand people.

"These are dangerous times, you can feel it. We need a leader who shows us how to hope again in America as a force for peace," Winfrey told the enthusiastic crowd.

"I believe Barack Obama will bring statesmanship to the White House," she said. "He's a man who knows who we are and knows who we can be."

Question: Does Oprah's endorsement mean more than the typical celebrity endorsement? How does Obama turn the enthusiasm into votes?

The Associated Press is out with a story about Mike Huckabee's comments on gays and AIDS in a 1992 survey submitted when he was running for the United States Senate.

The two bombshell quotes from Huckabee in 1992:

  • "If the federal government is truly serious about doing something with the AIDS virus, we need to take steps that would isolate the carriers of this plague.”
  • “I feel homosexuality is an aberrant, unnatural, and sinful lifestyle, and we now know it can pose a dangerous public health risk.”
It might be sad to ponder, but could these old quotes actually help him with Evangelical voters in Iowa and South Carolina who privately hold these beliefs?

Huckabee has responded: “In the late 80’s and early 90’s we were still learning about the virus that causes AIDS. My concern…was to deal with the virus using the same public health protocols that medical science and public health professionals would use with any infectious disease." Read Huck's full response at THE PAGE.


Matt said...

I hope you're wrong about these comments helping Huckabee among evangelical voters.

As an evangelical who happens to vote, these comments disgust and sicken me. These are more the views of a Fred Phelps than someone running for U.S. Senate. I would call on Gov. Huckabee to repudiate these remarks.

I try to post as an armchair analyst on this blog, but I must share nothing than 100% opinion.

Whatever I as a evangelical believe regarding homosexuality is irrelevant when I step into the field of public policy. HIV/AIDS is a serious public health issue, and deserves to be battled as any other public health issue such as cancer. Homosexuals pay the same taxes that heterosexuals pay and therefore deserve the same level of public service.

Again, someone needs to ask Huckabee if he still believes this. I am an undecided voter in the Republican field and this shot any chance of Huckabee gaining my vote unless he repudiates these remarks.

Paul Seale said...

It might be sad to ponder, but could these old quotes actually help him with Evangelical voters in Iowa and South Carolina who privately hold these beliefs?

To say that I am just a tad bit insulted by this is an understatement.

At least we know how you feel towards those who are Christians and vote. I wonder if viewers really know how you feel.



p.s. Matt, it looks like the story was pushed by the Romney campaign. If you are open to Huckabee as a candidate, I would read what he says directly and by pass what the talking heads say.

If that doesnt satisfy you - then look for another person to vote for.

Paul Seale said...


Here is Huck's response...

Its a good read that answers a few of your questions.

David Catanese said...


I'm glad you responded. It's interesting to hear that you are insulted.

I know many conservatives that believe the homosexual lifestyle is a sin, so I don't believe that statement would hurt Huckabee with hard-core conservatives. But maybe I'm wrong.

I do think his statement on AIDS is probably harder to defend. But if you notice in his response, he doesn't apologize for his comments on the gay lifestyle.

But if you are saying his comment on gays will hurt his support, that is news to me.

Paul Seale said...

As long as Huckabee stands by the belief to love the sinner and hate the sin he will be okay (as that is what the Bible teaches). The sin part wont (and shouldnt) hurt him. That is a personal values decision based on his faith.

The quarantining AIDS patients, however, is just crazy.

The issue is for Huckabee to answer and for people to decide if it is an adequate answer or not.

I think its also important for people to read the statement in its entire context - which no one is yet willing to print yet.

That said, I find it insulting for you to report a view such as quarantining AIDS patients as being helpful in a presidential campaign with people like my self.

I dont want to go where the characterization leads. Not cool.


Matt said...

I agree with Paul's last post and as a graduate student in public health, would like to draw some distinctions:

Huckabee in '92 compared HIV/AIDS to two other diseases: tuberculous and the plague. Both TB and the plague are spread through respiratory droplets (a fancy way of saying someone sneezes on you), or through coming into contact with bodily fluids such as a draining sore in the case of the plague. That would necessitate a different intervention on the part of public health authorities.

HIV is spread through sexual contact,the sharing of infected needles, or a blood transfusion. The point is, it's much more difficult to contract HIV than TB or the plague. That's where Huckabee's analogy breaks down.