The 2012 crowd reacts to Mike Huckabee’s decision to not run for president in 2012. All emphasis mine.
From Tim Pawlenty:
Mike Huckabee is a friend and colleague, and an important leader within the Republican Party. Mike and I agree our nation is facing big challenges and desperately needs new leadership, and I plan to work hard to earn the support of the millions of Americans who have supported him. Mary and I wish Mike and Janet all the best.
From Jon Huntsman:
Our country has been very fortunate to have Mike Huckabee as a leader and public servant. His commitment to this country and its core values — life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness — is a model to which all elected officials should aspire. It is unfortunate that we will not have his voice — or his bass guitar — in the presidential debate, as our party would have benefited from his involvement. Yet I’m confident that he will continue to be a positive force in the national conversation no matter his future endeavors, and I look forward to his continued friendship.
From Newt Gingrich:
Governor Mike Huckabee emerged in 2008 as a new star for the Republican Party and the conservative movement. Over the last 3 years he has used his gifts to create a popular Fox News TV show, produce an amazingly successful radio commentary, write best-selling books, and deliver thought provoking speeches. All have increased his stature and his influence.
Had Governor Huckabee decided to run, there is no question he would have been a frontrunner in the 2012 campaign for president. He has achieved that prominence without a campaign simply based on his personal appeal and the attractiveness of his views and his character.
His statement tonight emphasized the spiritual dimension of his life and his decision process. It is a wonderful example for all Americans of someone trying to do the right thing.
Governor Huckabee will remain a major force for conservatism and he will play a major role in shaping America’s future. Callista and I wish him and his family a wonderful, happy, and successful future.
From Donald Trump (who made a surprise appearance on Fox immediately after Huckabee’s announcement to deliver this message):
This might be considered by some people — not necessarily me — bad news because he is a terrific guy and frankly I think he’d be a terrific president. But a lot of people are very happy that he will not be running, especially the other candidates. So, Mike, enjoy the show, your ratings are terrific, you’re making a lot of money, you’re building a beautiful house in Florida, good luck.