Michael Farris, founder of the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA), wrote the following letter to Iowans in the weeks prior to the Ames Straw Poll.
The letter echoes many of our reasons for supporting Mike Huckabee and is pleasantly prophetic. Enjoy.
From the desk of Michael Farris
July 27, 2007
Dear Friends in Iowa,
Iowa voters have a unique opportunity to influence the future of America on August 11th. I write in the hope that you will consider my analysis on two critical issues:
Let's start with the second issue and then return to the August 11th event in Ames.
- Why you should attend the Iowa Straw Poll on August 11th in Ames.
- Why I have decided to support Governor Mike Huckabee for President in 2008.
In fairness, let me reveal the factors I used for deciding who to support for President. Many of you will recognize scriptural themes in my analysis. Let me emphasize, this is how I made my decision. I believe that every American has the total freedom and right to use their own value system to reach their own conclusions.
After a thorough review of all candidates, I believe that Mike Huckabee fully embraces all of these principles, qualities and possesses all of the relevant experience so that he is fully qualified to be our President.
- Our president should be a man of a consistent philosophy proven over time. In Deuteronomy 17, kings of Israel were to be those who did not deviate from the right way either to the right or the left. I simply do not trust those who have not been consistent over time--especially those who finally "discover" that they are social conservatives at the very time they are running for president.
- Our president must be a man of consistent character.
- Our president should have that rare combination of leadership, tenacity, and humility that is commended in that same passage. Leaders of Israel were to be strong to be sure, but they were, ". . .not to consider themselves better than their brothers."
- Our president should not be a neophyte in serious leadership positions. The New Testaments tells us that church leaders should be "tested" and that we are to avoid "laying hands" suddenly on someone. Although this does not apply directly to political leaders, I believe that there is wisdom in this standard that is broadly applicable.
- Our president must be an unwavering supporter of the right to life--period.
- Our president must understand the original intent of our Constitution and insist that both his administration and his judicial appointments faithfully follow its provisions.
- Our president must believe in American self-government. I will never support someone who believes that it is proper for any branch of government--other than an elected legislature--to make our laws. The UN should not be allowed to make laws for America. The Supreme Court should not be allowed to make law. No agency of government should be allowed to use international law to override the law of this country.
- Our president must believe in liberty--religious liberty for all is a first principle--but all principles of the First Amendment--and the Second (and the rest of the Bill of Rights) are essential. But, our president must understand that liberty under law allows for moral standards, not the amorality and decadence that is the byproduct of libertarianism.
Importantly, I believe that he has the best ability I have ever witnessed to communicate these values in a winsome and articulate fashion. His ability to communicate with such ease and quickness is not just a speaking gift, but it arises from a heart of deep conviction so that he never has to first stop and ask himself, "What am I supposed to say about this issue?"
On a pragmatic note, Americans elect Governors, not Senators, not members of the House and certainly not mayors. And Americans DO NOT elect moderate Republicans.
In 1976--Ford (a moderate) lost.
In 1980--Reagan ("too conservative for America") won a landslide.
In 1984--Reagan won another landslide.
In 1988--Bush (41) won because America thought he was Reagan, Jr.
In 1992--Bush lost after he violated his pledge on taxes and America knew he was a moderate.
In 1996--Dole (a moderate) lost.
In 2000--Bush (43) ran as a pro-life conservative and won.
In 2004--Bush won again.
The lessons to be learned are that when the GOP nominates a Senator we lose, and when we nominate a moderate we lose. We need a conservative Governor who is pro-life, pro-family and pro-Constitution. That is the pragmatic formula for victory.
Many of you know that my wife and I have homeschooled our children for 25 years. I have nine grandchildren being homeschooled. I am absolutely committed to the protection of the freedom for home education.
I believe that the biggest threat on the horizon to home education specifically and to parental rights in general is the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. Hillary Clinton will make this one of her highest priorities if she is elected president.
We need a president who is absolutely committed to the sovereignty of America and the sanctity of the family and is ready, willing and able to stop the UN from usurping the role of moms and dads who want to raise their children in a decent and honorable fashion.
Hillary makes her "pro-child" message sound so deceptively appealing. If we are going to win the presidency, the GOP candidate must stand for what is right, but also have the communication ability to make every one in America understand what a danger the UN Convention on children's rights poses to the American way of life for all of us.
Mike Huckabee has the convictions, the ability to communicate, and the ability to beat Hillary in debate after debate on this and any other issue she raises. I do not want to trust the future of my family to any person lacking the ability to truly best her in debate.
I have coached legal debate teams to repeated college national championships. I think I can spot a good debater. Mike Huckabee stands head and shoulders above all others in his ability to best any Democrat--Hillary, Obama, or Edwards.
Here is the rub:
- Mike Huckabee has proven his convictions over time.
- Mike Huckabee has the highest level of preparation and experience.
- Mike Huckabee has the right character.
- Mike Huckabee has the best ability of any candidate in either party to communicate a winsome and articulate message.
- Mike Huckabee is probably the only Republican who can win.
The media has decided for us who the frontrunners are, and big money Republicans have decided that they will only bet on frontrunners.
August 11th is the first and most critical moment in this campaign. It is the first time that the American public--not the media--gets to select the frontrunner.
I have had hundreds of people say to me, "Yes, Mike Huckabee is probably the best candidate--but how is he going to break out of the pack?"
The answer is, August 11th! If he can gain a very strong showing on August 11th, he will be a frontrunner. And then, the money will flow, and his ability to communicate will be noticed, and I believe he will fly to the top and win the nomination.
I have no doubt that if he wins the nomination, he will win the presidency. I cannot say that about any other Republican because winning requires that special combination of life experience (Governors), conservatism, and communication skill.
I know that this has been a little long. But choosing a president is a big deal. If my analysis seems sound to you, then I ask you to join me on August 11th in Ames. I will be there in person to support Mike Huckabee. If you are able to attend, please do so.
It is no exaggeration to say that the future of our country may well be riding on this event.