Huckabee: U.S. is best served with Netanyahu as prime minister

The former American governor also said that no one will be as good for Israel as Donald Trump.

July 15, 2019 16:35
4 minute read.
Former governor Mike Huckabee in Jerusalem

Former governor Mike Huckabee in Jerusalem. (photo credit: MAAYAN HOFFMAN)

If he could, American politician Mike Huckabee would cast a vote for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on September 17.

The former US presidential candidate and former Arkansas governor – who is also the father of US President Donald Trump’s previous press secretary, Sarah Elizabeth Huckabee Sanders – is in Israel again, this time with the National Council of Young Israel. He told The Jerusalem Post that he came to Israel in March “to campaign with” Netanyahu and that he “genuinely hope he wins.”

Though he is not planning any campaign events this time around, Huckabee is not shy about his belief that no other candidate would be as good for the Jewish state.

“I don’t know anyone who has better understood the world state, who has been more intentionally bold at the right time, balanced at the right time,” he said. “He has relationships with every world leader that could not be matched within years.”

He joked about how the prime minister can meet one day with Russian President Vladimir Putin, the next with Trump and then with German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

“He runs freely in every circle of power,” Huckabee said of Netanyahu. “He is able to get along with our friends and enemies in ways that we don’t. I don’t know if the Israeli population fully appreciates what that means to Israel – the level of stability, balance.

“As an American, I can tell you the US and the rest of the world are best served with the prime minister staying where he is,” he said. “I was here campaigning in March. My trip was personal. I paid my own way and I did it because a friend asked me to come. You help your friends. And I also believed that what I was doing was for the good of the world.

“I didn’t think I would have to come back and do it again,” he said with a chuckle.

In Huckabee’s estimation, there are many similarities between Trump’s and Netanyahu’s experiences in office, namely “an irrational hate and animosity from the Left and the media. The animosity targeted toward him is just stunning.”

He said that if the media cannot “beat you philosophically, then they attack you politically and finally personally.” Netanyahu’s ideas tend to be more acceptable than those of the opposition, he said, even to those who don’t like him on a personal level – the same is true with Trump.

So who will run against Trump in 2020?

Huckabee said he cannot predict, but he is sure it will be someone on the “furthermost left side of the cliff.”

“Even though they won’t admit it, their all socialists,” he told the Post, noting that no one else will be as good for Israel as the current president.

He spoke briefly about the immigration policy debate in the US, which has become a focus of the Jewish community there. On Tuesday, more than 1,000 Jews, immigrants and other allies under the banner of “Never Again Action” are expected to come together to shut down ICE in downtown Washington, demanding that elected officials take immediate action to end what they describe as “ICE’s reign of terror.”

Huckabee thinks it’s “crazy” that the Democrats have decided to care more about illegal immigrants than American citizens.

“They want to give illegals healthcare for free,” he said. “Americans who spent their whole lives working cannot get it. They want free education, while Americans cannot afford to send their kids to college. It is irrational.”

But he said it is not unexpected, as young Americans have lost touch with traditional American values and religion, and have become “indoctrinated by culture. God has systematically been removed from the public square… What we are seeing now is open hostility toward religion.”

He added, “I am ecstatic about the way Trump is treating Israel. He does not pretend he is one of us – an Evangelical – but the incredible support he got from the Evangelical community is largely responsible for him going over the top for Israel.

“Most American presidents will say the right things, but they don’t do much to back it up.”

Will Trump be able to achieve the “Deal of the Century?”

Huckabee said the fact that there was a Bahrain economic workshop is “significant” and one result is “a growing coalition of Arab nations who recognize [that] Israel is not their enemy, that Israel is not who they have to fear.” The real threat, he said, is Iran.

At the same time, he said that it has “become increasingly clear to the world that the Palestinians have no interest in reaching some type of conclusion. They have said ‘no’ to every single proposal. The longstanding dance is over.”

Even if a Democrat gets elected?

“Given the rhetoric of so many Democrats, I greatly fear for the US-Israel relationship [if a Democrat] is elected, but I also fear for America’s standing in the world,” Huckabee said. “The people on the other side of the aisle claim they want world peace, but you don’t have peace by being weak.

“Peace you achieve by being strong,” he concluded.

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