Fox host Mike Huckabee is openly considering running for president again. If he does, he can thank Fox News for much of whatever success he finds. In fact, he already does.
A recent profile of Huckabee in RealClearPolitics explores the “will he or won’t he run in 2016" issue. Whatever the answer turns out to be, there’s no question that Fox News has given Huckabee’s candidacy a nice political gift that’s there for the taking.
RCP highlights how the Huckabee show provides the host with “the kind of media exposure that any of the more frequently talked about GOP contenders can only dream of.”
No one is more aware of the value that this instant familiarity with core GOP voters would bring to a second presidential bid than the prospective candidate himself.
As a driver shuttled him between events, Huckabee told RealClearPolitics that his work on Fox has put him in a “very good place to be” politically as a self-imposed decision date looms in the early spring of next year.
“When I came up here eight years ago, nobody knew who I was,” he said. “I had to spell my name. They didn’t recognize me, and that was true all over the country. And now I come back, and I’ve been in these people’s homes every week.”
Media Matters points out that Huckabee is one of several Republican candidates who have enjoyed free airtime on Fox while considering a run for political office:
During the run-up to the 2012 Republican primary in 2010, Media Matters calculated that Fox News had essentially gifted its five employees that were considering running with roughly $55 million in free advertising. Huckabee was by far the biggest beneficiary, with about $31 million worth of free airtime.
… Huckabee isn’t the only Fox News contributor benefiting from the prominent platform while he ponders a 2016 presidential run. As he continues to make frequent appearances on the network, Fox News contributor Ben Carson has indicated the “likelihood is strong” he plans to run. Fox employee John Bolton is also reportedly considering entering the race.
Nice work if you can get it, eh?
If and when Huckabee decides to run that’ll be the end of his show so it’ll most likely come later than sooner depending on how much money he’ll be walking away from. While it’s possible he could win the Republican nomination or at least become a running mate to please the Christian base and Tea Party types I don’t believe he has the national appeal to win the presidency, especially against Hillary who can win the support of moderates and independents in comparison to Huckabee’s far right platform.
The 2016 Republican slate promises to be even more exciting than the last one!