Mike Huckabee on Technology

Former Republican AR Governor


Monitor terror on Facebook & Twitter, not Americans' phones

Q: You said, "not one terrorist plot has been foiled by the NSA's collection of American's phone records." But the director of the CIA said that not having these programs makes finding terrorists "much more challenging." Are you taking away a potential tool to fight terrorists?

HUCKABEE: No. I'm not taking it away, I just want to make sure that everything we use is going to be effective. We're spending billions of dollars, let's make sure it's effective. Let's use every tool, but let's also check out the Facebook posts, let's look at Twitter accounts. My gosh, we were told we couldn't do it because it might invade somebody's privacy. This lady who came over here and shot up San Bernardino was posting things on Facebook, yet, we were restricted from looking. This is what I think a lot of Americans are frustrated with, it's the duplicity of our policy that is illogical and irrational. Our goal ought to be, "protect Americans and put Americans first not last."

Source: 2015 CNN/Salem Republican second-tier debate , Dec 15, 2015

Viral campaign website spawned Huck's Army of bloggers

A vendor experienced in political Web site design wanted $250,000 for a 3-month contract, plus 6% of contributions. We turned to some old friends [instead], for $11,000 and no cut of the contributions. Looking back, this was one of the most important moves we made in those early months. The Web became one of the most powerful, most successful tools we had for getting our message out and bringing contributions in. If we hadn't had such a fantastic online presence at such a bargain price, we would have never achieved the results we did.

We went on to develop a comprehensive online strategy and direct-mail operation, nurturing independent (and free) efforts, like Huck's Army and Bloggers for Huckabee. They believed small blogs with their various networks of friends and family was more powerful than a top-down effort focused on winning over the news media. And they were absolutely right. It was a "viral" movement--small dedicated groups reaching out to each other and forming networks of support.

Source: Do The Right Thing, by Mike Huckabee, p. 85-86 , Nov 18, 2008

Post every federal expenditure on Internet without 24 hours

We should demand transparency and accountability from our government. I would propose that every time the federal government makes any expenditure, it posts it on the Internet within 24 hours, so you can find out exactly where every dollar of the budget goes, down to how much it costs to mow the courthouse lawn in your home town. Wouldn’t that shock some people, to find out exactly how our tax money comes in, and how it goes out.
Source: Speeches to 2008 Conservative Political Action Conference , Feb 7, 2008

Infrastructure: Stimulus, Safety, Security, & Sustainability

    My four guiding principles on infrastructure can be summed up simply: Stimulus, Safety, Security, and Sustainability.
  1. Stimulus: I support the short-term economic stimulus package, but we must also look to the next century, not just to the next few quarters.
  2. Safety: Infrastructure-based economic development is not just about giving our economy a shot in the arm--it is also about protecting and preserving what we have already developed.
  3. Security: Allowing these weaknesses to continue provides openings for the terrorists to exploit.
  4. Sustainability: I have always been a conservationist. Stewardship of the air and land and soil is very important to me. I will follow the principle I learned from the Boy Scouts: Always leave the land better than when you found it. I am proud of my record in Arkansas, building constructive consensus on key issues. I look forward to bringing the same leadership to America.
Source: 2008 Presidential campaign website mikehuckabee.com “Issues” , Feb 3, 2008

Infrastructure in this country has been neglected

We’ve got a crumbling infrastructure. I don’t have to tell people that their traffic is clogged. Every billion dollars we spend on highway construction results in 47,500 jobs. The average American is sitting in traffic 38 hours a year. That’s a full work week, not on vacation, not spent with their kids, stuck in traffic, just sitting there behind the wheel, pointing fingers, usually one at a time, at other motorists and very upset with what’s going on around them in this traffic. The point is we are burning a lot of fuel up in the air, polluting the environment. We’re wasting time. Parents never get home to their kids’ soccer games and recitals. We have bridges falling down on people in the US. Infrastructure in this country has been neglected, whether it’s our airports, our bridges, and our roads, and I don’t think there’s a governor in this state that wouldn’t tell you that you’ll create more jobs and you’ll build it with American workers, American concrete and American steel. That’s stimulus
Source: 2008 Republican debate at Reagan Library in Simi Valley , Jan 30, 2008

Every $1B spent on infrastructure creates 47,500 jobs

Q: You’ve said you’ve got some serious problems with the Bush economic stimulus package.

A: The problem I have is that taxpayers will spend their $150 billion in rebates to buy imports from China. So whose economy is being stimulated? What I suggested was, we have a nation whose infrastructure is crumbling. Our roads, bridges, airports clogged up. Texas A&M did a study, found that the average American in an urban setting loses 38 hours a year--that’s a full work week--stuck in traffic because of clogged traffic patterns. Now, $150 billion would expand the interstate by two lanes, I-95, from Bangor, Maine, to Miami. There are places all over America where our infrastructure is choked. Every billion dollars we spend on infrastructure creates 47,500 jobs. And we do it with American labor, American cement, American steel. That’s why I’m saying that that’s a real long-term stimulus package. But it does more than just stimulate the economy, it actually stimulates jobs for Americans for a change.

Source: CNN Late Edition: 2008 presidential series with Wolf Blitzer , Jan 27, 2008

$150B for highway infrastructure is better stimulus package

If we’re going to spend $150 billion [as in Bush’s economic stimulus package], I’d like to suggest that maybe we add two lanes of highway from Bangor all the way to Miami on I-95. A third of the United States population lives within 100 miles of that. This nation’s infrastructure is falling apart. And if we built those lanes of highways--with American labor, American steel, American concrete--I believe it would do more to stimulate the economy.

And the reason I say that is because when we were going through a recession in my state, we were in the middle of a billion-dollar highway construction program that brought about 40,000 jobs and brought a billion dollars of capital into the economy. That’s a long- term stimulus package that I think would have more impact on the American long-term future. And it would keep social capital from being wasted, fuel wasted. A lot of people sit around in traffic every day, and we’ve done nothing about it.

Source: 2008 GOP debate in Boca Raton Florida , Jan 24, 2008

Improved AR roads, via voter-approved tax increase

Q: What about Mitt Romney’s claims on your tax policies?

A: He made claims about things like tax increases, but he failed to mention that they were voted on by the people & approved by the people for roads. And I left my roads in great shape, took them from the worst in the country to what Truckers Magazine said were the most improved. He left his roads in a mess, with huge problems in the infrastructure. He claimed that he didn’t raise taxes, but, in fact, he did raise taxes by half a billion dollars.

Q: As fees.

A: Yes, fees. It’s a tax. If you’re a small business person and you pay more money than you paid last year to the government, you can call it a fee, call it a tax, it’s a three letter word that means the same.

Q: But you raised taxes.

A: Well, [we used revenue to] build highways that give you economic incentives and capacities that, frankly, created the lowest unemployment numbers that our state had over had over a sustained period of time. We saw more new jobs created.

Source: Meet the Press: 2007 “Meet the Candidates” series , Dec 30, 2007

We modernized Arkansas & made state accessible online

Over the 10 1/2 years that I was a governor, Arkansas taxes increased by one penny, but our schools improved so much that the CARET Foundation said we had done more to reform education in five years than had been done in the previous 50.

We went from a road system that was deemed the worst in the country, by Truckers Magazine, to the most improved. I changed the way to get a driver’s license so that, instead of it taking seven hours, all day, it took four minutes on the Internet.

Brown University said we had done more in technology to make our state accessible online and to do more electronic services than any other state in the country.

So what we did, we modernized Arkansas. We rebuilt its education system. The things that were done were done to make government functional. People don’t hate government. They just want it to work. And that’s what we did in my state, and that’s what I would do as president.

Source: CNN Late Edition: 2007 presidential series with Wolf Blitzer , Nov 25, 2007

Air tech is Jetsons but air traffic control is Flintstones

Q: How do you fix airline travel in this country?

A: Well, as president, that would be one of the first things I’d like to do, since I’ve spent most of my year on an airline this entire time. First of all, we’ve got to have the kind of technology on the ground that we have in the cockpit. We’ve got Jetsons-level technology that’s running the cockpit; we have the Flintstones technology on the ground that’s controlling the airplanes. And it’s ridiculous. And the second thing, we’ve got an incredibly archaic method of the controls where you have incredible traffic coming in to key hubs. I don’t want to re-regulate the industry, but the industry’s going to have to start either getting in the program--and one thing they’ve got to stop doing is holding the passengers hostage on airplanes for hours and hours without any way of being able to get off those planes. And part of it, I think, is let’s make sure that the consumer gets a voice in what happens. And it’s got to be a priority.

Source: 2007 Republican debate in Dearborn, Michigan , Oct 9, 2007

No Fairness Doctrine: no equal time if morally objectionable

Q: As a Christian radio talk-show host, I don’t want to be forced to broadcast morally objectionable material or give equal time to opponents of our faith. Would you veto any legislation that contains language of the so called “Fairness Doctrine?” HUNTER: The liberals want to be able to cut into every conservative talk show [because they can’t get people to] turn on the dial.
Source: [Xref Hunter] 2007 GOP Values Voter Presidential Debate , Sep 17, 2007

Apply broadcast indecency rules to cable networks

Q: Currently the broadcast indecency rules only apply to local broadcast stations. Do you support and believe that broadcast indecency rules should be expanded to cable networks as well?
Source: [Xref Paul] 2007 GOP Values Voter Presidential Debate , Sep 17, 2007

Spend on our infrastructure instead of other countries’

Q: Is it time we raise the federal gas tax to start fixing up our nation’s bridges and roads?

A: It’s not necessary that we raise a tax. We’re spending billions of dollars all around the world, but it may be time that we start spending some of those billions of dollars to deal with our own infrastructure. And it’s our bridges, our interstates, our sewer and water treatment systems. They’re crumbling. They’re old. And we have to start addressing building this country, not everybody else’s.

Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate , Aug 5, 2007

Cars’ navigation systems are better than air traffic control

Anybody who’s flown lately--as I do pretty regularly in the commercial system--know that we have a complete gridlock. And part of that problem is we’ve got a system of air traffic control that was designed in 1950, five years before I was born. We’ve got better navigation systems in our rental cars than we have running the airline industry today. We need to address it. It’s not being talked about.
Source: 2007 GOP Iowa Straw Poll debate , Aug 5, 2007

TV is like fire; pols must use it even though it can burn

TV is like fire. Fire can be good or it can be bad. It can burn you, but it also can warm you & cook your food. Several points are helpful in dealing with the media.

One is not to be afraid. Whether you like it or not, the media provide the vehicle through which whatever you do or say is delivered to people. I had to accept the reality that Arkansans’ perceptions of me and what I was doing came through the media.

Second, you must diversify your contacts with various types of media. Neither have one reporters or paper be your only contact. Do not become dependent on one medium. All are important. Now there are new technologies like the Internet.

If the medium for moving public policy is TV, then understand that TV is the field of play & learn to run on it. It does not mean you have to give up your intellect; it means you have to be able to demonstrate that intellect in the medium the public has chosen. If you cannot do that, you probably are not going to be successful in politics today.

Source: Character Makes a Difference, by Mike Huckabee, p.140-142 , Jun 1, 2007

More bible; less blogs; more music; less network TV

Source: Resolution of Southern Governor's Assn. on Federal R&D 01-SGA4 on Sep 9, 2001

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