ACU responds to Huckabee attack on CPAC

← return to Water Cooler

Former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee ripped into the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) yesterday calling it increasingly “more Libertarian and less Republican over the last few years, one of the reasons why I didn’t go this year.” He responded this way after Fox News host Geraldo Rivera presented the CPAC straw poll voter results showing that the governor scored poorly at only four percent among CPAC straw poll voters.

At the goading of Mr. Rivera, Mr. Huckabee slammed CPAC as now irrelevant due to the tea party events all over the country. The former Arkansas governor and presidential GOP candidate said, “The tea party has taken all the oxygen out of the room, where CPAC was historically the event, the tea parties now are having their events all over the country and a lot more grassroots people are truly getting involved, because of the tea parties.”

He took his biggest shot at how CPAC finds co-sponsors and speakers for their panels, saying, “I think because the way it solicits sponsors, its almost become a pay for play. It’s kind of like who will pay money to be able to be a sponsor and to be able to get time on the program. That’s what hurt its credibility in the last couple of years.”

The American Conservative Union, the organization that hosts CPAC each year, has responded to Mr. Huckabee:

“We are perplexed by Governor Huckabee’s comments about CPAC given our long and cordial relationship with him and his family.

For those who don’t understand how CPAC operates, here is a thumbnail sketch:  Our cosponsors meet several times during the year to suggest topics and speakers who they believe should be invited. Many of those invited are from groups that are neither co-sponsors nor financial supporters of the conference itself. This year, for example, groups that provided speakers but weren’t co-sponsors included among others Fox News, the American Enterprise Institute, and The Club for Growth, The Tea Party Patriots, Students for Life and dozens of others.

The Governor himself has spoken at several CPAC conferences in the past and he was invited to speak at CPAC 2010. On December 18th we were advised that his schedule wouldn’t permit his participation this year, but hoped we would have a ‘wonderful event’.  The Governor’s daughter Sarah was able to attend CPAC, and participated in XPAC, the student lounge at CPAC sponsored by Xtreme Media (radio hosts Kevin McCullough and Stephen Baldwin). Organizers said she did a great job and the CPAC students loved her.

CPAC 2010 drew more than 10,000 conservative activists from around the country representing every part of the movement and including more than 5000 college students. We were proud that Sarah, who introduced her dad at last year’s conference, was part of the record-breaking crowd this year.

We hope next year she’ll be back and bring her dad!”

The ACU appears to be pretty forgiving of Governor Huckabee’s actions on the Fox News channel yesterday given the circumstances. One must wonder what happened when when his daughter, Sarah, caught up with him later on. However, talk about biting the hand that feeds you. CPAC organizers may be quick to turn the other cheek, but CPAC attendees may not be so forgiving next time around.



← return to Water Cooler

About the Author
Kerry Picket

Kerry Picket

Kerry Picket, a former Opinion Blogger/Editor of The Watercooler, was associate producer for the Media Research Center, a content producer for Robin Quivers of "The Howard Stern Show" on Sirius satellite radio and a production assistant and copy writer at MTV.

Latest Stories

Latest Blog Entries

blog comments powered by Disqus
You Might Also Like
  • Maureen McDonnell looks on as her husband, former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, made a statement on Tuesday after the couple was indicted on corruption charges. (associated press)

    PRUDEN: Where have the big-time grifters gone?

  • This photo taken Jan. 9, 2014,  shows New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie gesturing as he answers a question during a news conference  at the Statehouse in Trenton.  Christie will propose extending the public school calendar and lengthening the school day in a speech he hopes will help him rebound from an apparent political payback scheme orchestrated by key aides. The early front-runner for the 2016 Republican presidential nomination will make a case Tuesday Jan. 14, 2014, that children who spend more time in school graduate better prepared academically, according to excerpts of his State of the State address obtained by The Associated Press. (AP Photo/Mel Evans)

    BRUCE: Bombastic arrogance or humble determination? Chris Christie’s choice

  • ** FILE ** Secretary of State Hillary Rodham testifies on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 23, 2013, before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the deadly September attack on the U.S. diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya, that killed Ambassador J. Chris Stevens and three other Americans. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, File)

    PRUDEN: The question to haunt the West

  • Illustration by Greg Groesch/The Washington Times

    LAMBRO: Skirting the lane-closure issue

  • Illustration by Linas Garsys/The Washington Times

    LYONS: Benghazi demands a select committee in Congress

  • Happening Now