In a statement, Huckabee blamed “failures in the criminal justice system in both Arkansas and Washington State. … This is a horrible and tragic event and if found and convicted the offender should be held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.”
Joe Carter, the former research director of his presidential campaign, wrote for First Things that “His naivete about how his actions would be judged was compounded by his own belief in the nobleness of his motives.”
“Judging from the records, the governor also seemed to put a lot of weight on conversion stories—a common trait among evangelicals, who believe the gospel is sufficient for restoration and redemption of character,” Carter wrote. “The opinion of clergy appears to have carried a great deal of weight in the decision-making process.”
During the 2008 election, critics pointed to Wayne DuMond, a convicted rapist who murdered and raped again after being freed in 1999. Carter continues:
Ironically, what makes Huckabee such an appealing presidential candidate — his empathy for all people and genuine belief in the individual — is also the trait that will prevent him from ever reaching the White House. His experiences and intuitions that served him well as a minister of the gospel were not always applicable in of governor of a state. The unfortunate reality is that for politicians, unlike pastors, there are limits to compassion.
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