Friday, September 5, 2008

Former Republican Presidential Candidate Says GOP Should Focus More On Health Care In Presidential Election

“Former Republican presidential candidate and Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee on Tuesday during a forum about obesity expressed disappointment that the party has not focused more on health care in the presidential election, The Hill reports. According to Huckabee, ‘speech gurus’ at the Republican National Convention recommended that he remove language about health care from his planned convention speech. However, Huckabee also pointed out ‘that time constraints restricted his speech to about half the size of his draft,’ according to The Hill. In addition, Huckabee criticized the other former Republican presidential candidates for their failure to participate in a health care forum in Iowa during the primaries. Only Huckabee and presumptive Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain (Ariz.) participated in the forum, sponsored by AARP. Huckabee also praised AARP and the Service Employees International Union for their efforts to promote health care in the presidential election. Huckabee said, ‘I wish I could get some attention for this. I tried on the campaign trail. I desperately tried.’ He added, ‘In the first nine debates we had, do you know how many health care questions we had? For Republicans, in the first nine debates: one. One.’ The ‘issue of health care, particularly achieving universal health care, has been paramount on the Democratic side during the presidential contest but has rarely cropped up on the GOP side,’ according to The Hill (Blake, The Hill, 9/2).”

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