Mike Huckabee finds the center

Mike Huckabee on Fox News this weekend says the views of Phil Robertson of Duck Dynasty are very much “traditional ... steadfast, old-fashioned Biblical Christian values which are also, by the way, values of traditional Judaism and Islam.” Traditional Hinduism and Buddhism, you might add. And Robertson says, “I will not give or back down from my path.” Issues aside, his stance is what America craves: courage of conviction.

It could bring Mike Huckabee to the center of American politics.

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There are 30 states in the middle of America today as in Pirandello’s play; characters in search of an author. But it is not clear that any of these governors have national cache. Huck might, as he speaks without hedging. He even absorbs much of Ron Paul — states rights, sound money, constitutional government.

Recent polls suggest that Mitt Romney might have been up 10 percent ahead of President Obama today while a “generic conservative” runs about even. But taken individually, most of the “generic conservatives”  do not really rise to be contenders. And some, like Michele Bachmann or Rick Santorum, are marginal, eclectic and would even be considered strange to some of us in northern New England. But Huck fits. And he would probably do all right in Dixville Notch, the northernmost voting town of New Hampshire and touchstone for New Hampshire sensibility.

Huck has a way of disagreeing with you that doesn’t necessarily make you feel like he doesn’t like you. If there were a scale for that, Huck would rank the highest. With most of the others, it’s “us against them.” And that might be the most necessary barometer of our collective American condition; acceptance, from one to the other.

If Jimmy Carter can get elected, certainly Huck can.