- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee said the response he’s gotten from Jewish people to his recent comments that the Iran deal is marching Israelis “to the door of the oven” has been “overwhelmingly positive.”

“The response from Jewish people has been overwhelming positive,” Mr. Huckabee said Tuesday on NBC’s “Today” program. “The response from Holocaust survivors, from the children of Holocaust survivors. I was last night in an event - I was probably one of four gentiles in the entire event - it was a Jewish event. People were overwhelmingly supportive.”

Mr. Huckabee made the comments in an interview over the weekend with Breitbart News, and the remarks have been criticized by people ranging from former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, the 2016 Democratic front-runner, to Republican presidential rival and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush.

Mr. Huckabee said that as president, he would use the same language.

“I have been to Auschwitz three times. I have stood at that very place,” he said. “I’ve been to Israel dozens of times. My first trip there was 42 years ago. The one thing I am absolutely assured of is that for 6,000 years, Jews have been hunted down and the last time the world did not take seriously threats against the Jewish people, just before World War II, this ended up in the murder of six million Jews.

“We need to use strong words when people make strong threats against an entire group of people as the Iranians have made toward the Jews,” he said.

He pushed back on the notion that Republican candidates are doing and saying anything to be heard amid the rise of businessman Donald Trump, who has shot to the top of recent polling on the 2016 GOP race.

“It’s nothing that I haven’t said for the past 42 years, having been in and out of Israel and having been a strong believer that the reason that the Holocaust happened was because so many people naively believed Neville Chamberlain’s ridiculous statement that we’re going bring peace in our time, and we ended up seeing 11 million people murdered, 6 (million) of whom who were Jews who were marched to those very ovens that I’ve stood in front of,” he said.

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