Mike Huckabee has come out swinging at an unlikely target: a student journalist from New Jersey.
On April 9, the College Of New Jersey's student paper, The Perspective, published an interview with Huckabee stemming from his visit to the campus two days earlier. In the interview, composed by the paper's editor, Michael Tracey, Huckabee laid into Republican National Committee Chair Michael Steele, Mitt Romney and gay rights policies, expressing some particularly strong views on same-sex marriage:
Huckabee went on to draw parallels between homosexuality and other lifestyles that are considered by some to be morally aberrant.
"You don't go ahead and accommodate every behavioral pattern that is against the ideal," he said of same-sex marriage. "That would be like saying, well, there are a lot of people who like to use drugs, so let's go ahead and accommodate those who want to use drugs. There are some people who believe in incest, so we should accommodate them. There are people who believe in polygamy, so we should accommodate them."
Huckabee also defended an Arkansas law that prevents gay couples from adopting children, saying that "children are not puppies" and should not be used to "experiment."
Today, Huckabee responded to the interview on his website, saying he was taken out of context.
The young college student hopefully will find a career other than journalism. I would ask that he release the unedited tape of our conversation. I believe that what people do as individuals in their private lives is their business, but I do not believe we should change the traditional definition of marriage. Not only did he attempt to sensationalize my well known and hardly unusual views of same-sex marriage, he also inaccurately reported my views on Michael Steele as GOP chairman - I offered my support and didn't "Rip into Steele" as his article asserted. I had a candid and frank conversation with the group about health care, education, the economy and national security while the young journalism student, instead, chose to focus on the issue of same-sex marriage and grossly distort my views.
The Perspective, in turn, responded to the governor on their site:
It is telling that nowhere in his statement did Huckabee suggest he was misquoted in the article, and rightfully so; we have the audio and transcripts to prove that everything reported is accurate.
Huckabee's problem seems to lie more in the focus of the article, which is centered partially on LGBT issues. We feel that same-sex marriage, laws prohibiting gays and lesbians from adopting children, and 'Don't Ask Don't Tell' are legitimate policy concerns about which to question national political figures. Gov. Huckabee may disagree.
Looks like the proof may be in the student paper -- listen for yourself in this excerpt of the interview.