The United States
shouldn't try to kill Saddam Hussein in Iraq, Mike
Huckabee declared when he first ran for office. No women in
combat anywhere. No gays in the military. No
contributions in politics to candidates more than a
year before an election.
are among 229 answers Huckabee offered as a 36-year-old
Texarkana pastor during his first run for political office
in 1992. In that unsuccessful race for the U.S. Senate
against incumbent Dale Bumpers, Huckabee offered
himself as a social conservative and listed ''moral
decay'' as one of the top problems facing the country.
Now that he's a
front-runner for the Republican presidential nomination,
he's being asked anew about some of the views and comments
he expressed in the survey by the Associated Press.
Over the weekend he said he wouldn't retract answers
in which he advocated isolating AIDS patients from the
general public, opposed increased funding for finding a
cure, and said homosexuality could pose a public
health risk -- though he said today he might phrase
his answers ''a little differently.''
Some of the words
in his answers to the questionnaire are indeed strong.
Asked about gays
in the military, for example, he didn't just reject the
idea but added, ''I believe to try to legitimize that which
is inherently illegitimate would be a disgraceful act
of government. I feel homosexuality is an aberrant,
unnatural, and sinful lifestyle, and we now know it
can pose a dangerous public health risk.'' (AP)