He is on the second day of a 41-day book tour, and the potential GOP presidential field is narrowing by the day, but don’t hold your breath waiting for Mike Huckabee to announce his plans for 2012.
Speaking to reporters Wednesday afternoon, the former Arkansas governor turned 2008 Republican presidential candidate turned Fox News contributor acknowledged that his newly achieved wealth is a factor as he considers whether to seek the presidency. But he also offered very few clearly formed policy decisions, suggesting that his intentions are far from formalized.
“If I run, I walk away from a pretty good income. I don’t want to walk away any sooner than I have to because frankly, I don’t have a lot of reserve built up. Most of my life was in public service. Therefore I didn’t come away wealthy,” he said during an afternoon tea organized by the Christian Science Monitor.
“In order to run for president last time, I cashed in my life insurance, my annuities, I pretty much went through everything that I ever had as an asset that I thought I might someday live on. One thing I committed to myself, to my wife and God, was that if I do this I’m hopefully going to be in a position that I’m not so completely destitute at the end of it, that I have no idea what to do if I get sick. ...”
Huckabee, 55 and an ordained Southern Baptist minister, went so far as to say it was “stupid” to get into the race too early, noting that the sooner a candidate jumps in, the sooner he or she has to pay for the related campaign apparatus. And it was clear, based on some of his answers, that the prospective candidate hadn’t yet crafted talking points on issues such as Afghanistan, the Wisconsin labor dispute or even taxes.
Rep. Christopher H. Smith, R-N.J., left, David Goldman, center, and Arvind Chawdra right, attend a news conference in the Rayburn House Office Building on international child abduction. Goldman and Chawdra are fathers whose children were abducted by their mothers and taken abroad.
Each year since 1990, CQ Roll Call has reviewed the financial disclosures of all 541 senators, representatives and delegates to determine the 50 richest members of Congress. This year's report, derived from forms covering the calendar year 2012, shows it took a net worth of $6.67 million to crack the exclusive club.