Mike Huckabee

Week 6 Recap

This week at Campaign Mapping, we had the chance to start looking at a few issues with a little more analysis. That is, we dove into a little more depth. 

Starting with racial tensions—a topic with still much more to be mapped—we looked at the geographic distribution of minorities in general and African Americans specifically following a comment John Kasich included in his announcement speech. Kasich noted that the American system often works against, rather than for, certain minority groups. Contrast this with the ways in which others have discussed race-based disparities in opportunity, including Ben Carson's comment that the "racial wars" in the US "don't exist." By the end of the week, we considered Mike Huckabee's characterization of "racial strife" as a problem of "sin" rather than "sin" and mapped the regional patterns of overall racial and ethnic diversity (or lack thereof) across the country. 

We dug a little deeper into two additional topics regarding economic opportunity: education and small business. Marco Rubio's proposal to reform higher education—its structure and its costs—prompted a map of recent graduates' student loan default rates. As for small businesses, we looked at recent decline and growth of small businesses per state following a comment by Carly Fiorina. In the atlas entry, we see the effects of last decade's financial crisis and also interpret what really constitutes a "small business."

We considered the question of American partisanship after Ben Carson described the country as "Republicans and Democrats instead of Americans" suggesting that voters follow poor leadership based on party affiliation rather than the quality of ideas and policies. Full disclosure: describing the country as a collection of "red" and "blue" is of particular importance to the Campaign Mapping project, as that map is the one most commonly used to characterize our politics and is also a powerful image influencing how American voters see themselves and their fellow Americans.

Next week, we will start by looking at infrastructural needs in the country based on a call for investment (and job creation) by Bernie Sanders. Along that vein we'll also look at energy sector jobs as well as a few other ways in which American households and families have been described by the candidates.


Mike Huckabee Says Sin Is America's Race Problem

"We don't have a skin problem in America. We have a sin problem in America."

On Sunday, July 19th, 2015 in Manning, SC at Rock Hill Missionary Baptist Church
Sources: CNN.com, Huckabee campaign YouTube (ad including the same remarks at the Family Leadership Summit)

The Context: Roughly a month after the massacre in Charleston, ordained Southern Baptist minister Mike Huckabee visited a predominantly African-American church in South Carolina. Huckabee praised the people of Charleston for their response to the shooting, drawing on a theme of reconciliation. As has been echoed by others in the race, the pressure to progress as a unified nation is imperative. The question of race-based injustice and violence has become a pivotal issue for several candidates—each adopting a slightly different approach. Huckabee presents it as the result of failing to meet Christian imperatives and describes how racial tensions can be addressed through prayer. Toward this, he cites 2 Corinthians. 

Without question, the United States is a diverse country. Beyond cultural, religious, or racial diversity, we are also regionally diverse. The priorities pressing upon some corners of the country are not the same as those facing others (and this distinction is certainly true amongst the early primary states). The richness and complexities—at times, both celebrated and tragic—stemming from our differences are not seen or felt with the same imperative urgency everywhere. And, so, we asked

What are the regional patterns of our racial diversity? In other words, where do we live together?

Mike Huckabee Is Running for President

"Washington is more dysfunctional than ever and has become so beholden to the donor class who fills the campaign coffers that it ignores the fact that one in four American families are paying more than half their income for housing. Homeownership is at the lowest level in decades, and young people with heavy student debt aren’t likely to afford their first home for a while. Our federal policies for affordable housing aren’t designed to protect families, but to protect bureaucrats."

On Tuesday, May 5, 2015 in Hope, AR
Sources: C-SPAN,  Ameriborn News 

The Context: Huckabee describes the relative costliness of homeownership as a systemic issue partially caused and partially exacerbated by policies ranging from campaign finance to the structure of antipoverty programs and income inequality to international trade agreements. Consistent themes throughout his announcement speech were the "dysfunctional" logics of government size and spending, its relationship with wealth and power, and its effects on American communities and workers.

Housing affordability is indeed a product of several intersecting issues, and the rates at which American households can afford their housing reflect this. Federal policy on affordable housing uses an income-based formula which states that one's housing is affordable if its monthly cost does not exceed 30% of the household's monthly income. With this in mind, we asked,

For whom is a lack of affordable housing a greater hurdle? And which parts of the country are most affected by this lack?