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Huckabee, Morris keep lines open (Dick Morris)
The Politico ^ | 12-3-07 | Jonathan Martin

Posted on 12/04/2007 5:58:52 AM PST by STARWISE

Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee has been holding private conversations with Dick Morris, according to aides, a long-standing relationship that is raising new questions as Huckabee’s campaign begins to take off.

Morris’ most prominent calling card has been with Bill Clinton — for two decades, starting in 1977, as his most influential (if sometimes erratic) political adviser and for the past decade as one of his most persistent (if sometimes erratic) public critics.

But the Arkansas connection the controversial consultant and commentator established through Clinton also brought Huckabee onto his client roster, beginning in 1993 when he advised the Republican’s winning campaign for lieutenant governor.

Morris lately has been lavishing praise in newspaper columns and television appearances on Huckabee, whose polished debate performances and recent gains in the polls in Iowa have given him a chance to penetrate the top tier among the GOP candidates.

“Mike Huckabee is on a roll,” Morris began one of his columns in The Hill newspaper last month. He also offers regular political analysis for Fox News and the New York Post.

Morris’ public touts of Huckabee sometimes come with disclosures of his past working relationship with the candidate, but they do not mention that the two men still talk regularly — an omission that could raise eyebrows among journalistic ethicists.

As Huckabee’s prospects become more serious, speculation about Morris’ role has blossomed in the small circle — sometimes incestuous, sometimes bitterly competitive — of national political operatives. Some accounts place Morris as an important figure among Huckabee’s kitchen cabinet of outside advisers.

Here is what is known: Morris and Huckabee confer with one another, according to two top Huckabee advisers — campaign manager Chip Saltsman and consultant Dick Dresner, who is himself a former business partner of Morris.

Here is what is not known: the exact dimensions of Morris’ current role with Huckabee or the degree to which his talks with the candidate are influencing campaign strategy.

Morris declined to be interviewed but said in an e-mail he talks with Huckabee casually and does not consider himself an adviser.

“He, like Rudy [Giuliani] and the staff of three or four other campaigns, are personal friends, and I chat with them from time to time, but nothing like an adviser,” Morris wrote on Friday.

“Yeah, they do,” Dresner said, when asked if Huckabee and Morris still actively confer.

“Just like you [in the press corps], he gets his calls returned. The difference is [Morris] has a close, personal relationship with the governor.”

Ongoing conversation

Dresner also has a long-standing relationship with Huckabee — but also with Morris.

The two New Yorkers have been friends on-and-off for nearly 40 years and previously were business partners. Dresner now serves as Huckabee’s pollster and media consultant, the only outside strategist retained on the former governor’s payroll.

Saltsman downplayed the significance of the talks between his candidate and Morris but acknowledged that the conversation is ongoing.

“He’s got lots of friends from his years as governor,” he said.

Asked hours after this story was first published whether he had been consulting with Morris, Huckabee himself sought to play down his contact with his former adviser — but then conceded that he thinks highly of Morris and still talks to him.

“I wish I had been,” Huckabee said in an interview on ABC's “This Week.” “Dick’s one of the smartest political minds, as you well know, in the business. I’ve known Dick for, gosh, almost, I guess, 18, 17 years. He was a political consultant for me in the early ’90s in the first races that I won.

“But Dick is not available for doing political consulting work. Frankly, I wish he was, because he’s a brilliant political mind, and I still consider him a friend. I run into him from time to time, or I may talk to him. But I probably talk to 30, 40 journalists a week. Most of them I talk to more than I talk to Dick Morris, and I haven’t talked to him in a while.”

Questions raised

But those who have worked around Morris said this mild description likely does not do justice to the full tang of the Morris-Huckabee talks.

For one thing, virtually any conversation with Morris is a ceaseless, occasionally manic, flow of political analysis and theorizing, historical analogies, predictions, importuning and advice.

It is implausible Morris would turn off this faucet for a strictly social chat with a former client who just happens to be running for president.

At a minimum, the previously unreported Huckabee-Morris conversations raise two sets of questions.

One set is political: What will conservatives think about Huckabee’s mind-melds with a consultant who, in addition to having a history of sexual scandal, is known as an apostle of exhaustively polled centrism that Morris coined “triangulation.”


Continues at link

TOPICS: News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: Arkansas; US: Iowa
KEYWORDS: clinton; dickmorris; fnc; foxnews; fredthompson; huckabee; huckster; mikehuckabee; toes
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I've not heard Morris mention he's consulting with Huckabee .. anyone else? If not, how typical of the always self-promoting Dick Morris.
1 posted on 12/04/2007 5:58:53 AM PST by STARWISE
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The political whore called the toe-sucker is a perfect fit for the Huckster.

"Meet the Huckster" San Diego Union Trib

2 posted on 12/04/2007 6:01:50 AM PST by Travis McGee (
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To: spectre; 2ndDivisionVet

"Pretty soon, Southern white guys like me may be in the minority," Huckabee said jokingly as the crowd roared in laughter.

Huckabee promotes 'open door' policy at LULAC convention

Thursday, Jun 30, 2005

By Wesley Brown

Arkansas News Bureau

LITTLE ROCK - In a impassioned speech before hundreds of influential Hispanic civil rights leaders from across the nation, Gov. Mike Huckabee told a captive audience Wednesday that America is great because it has always opened it doors up to people seeking a better way of life.

"I would hope that no matter who we are, or where we are from, that America should always be a place that opens its arms, opens it heart, opens its spirit to people who come because they want the best for their families ...," Huckabee said as the largely Hispanic audience gave him a standing ovation.

Huckabee was the keynote speaker, along with Tyson Foods Inc. Chairman and CEO John Tyson, at a noon luncheon of the League of United Latin American Citizens, which is holding its 76th annual convention in Little Rock.

About 10,000 political, community and business leaders, along with exhibitors and speakers are in Little Rock attending the convention at the Statehouse Convention Center. The convention started Monday and runs through Saturday.

Although he never actually talked about the U.S. or Arkansas immigration policy, Huckabee made it very clear where he stood on the issue. In his opening remarks, he said the nation will need to address the concerns of the Hispanic community because of its growing influence and population base.

"Pretty soon, Southern white guys like me may be in the minority," Huckabee said jokingly as the crowd roared in laughter.

He told the LULAC delegates that their presence in the state's capital city was very important because Arkansas has one of the fastest growing Hispanic populations in the nation. "Your gathering is so very significant for our state," Huckabee said. "We are delighted to have you."

Despite several light moments, Huckabee did not stray away from several controversial issues that made him a target of criticism during the recently ended 85th General Assembly. He said Arkansas needs to make the transition from a traditional Southern state to one that recognizes and cherishes diversity "in culture, in language and in population."

"This is an issue that is going to require extraordinary efforts on both sides of the border, particularly those coming from Mexico," Huckabee said of verifying the status of illegal aliens. "But I am confident that our government will recognize that we should accommodate people who wish to provide the best opportunities for their families (and) employers so that we can make sure our economy has the necessary work force."

During the legislation session, Huckabee criticized an immigration bill by Republican senators Jim Holt of Springdale and Denny Altes of Fort Smith as un-Christian, un-American, irresponsible and anti-life. Senate Bill 206, which died in the Senate, would have required proof of citizenship to register to vote and also force state agencies to report suspected cases of people living in the country illegally. Holt, R-Springdale, replied later to Huckabee's comments that Christian charity does not include turning a blind eye to lawbreaking.

3 posted on 12/04/2007 6:02:53 AM PST by Travis McGee (
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Birds of a feather flock together.

4 posted on 12/04/2007 6:08:24 AM PST by alicewonders (Duncan Hunter needs to be our next Sec. of Defense, Dir. of Homeland Security - or Vice President)
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To: Travis McGee

I don’t trust this guy! He looks and sounds like he’s all “politics” to me. A wheeler-dealer type who’s brandishing a ‘conservative’ label to get into the country club.

5 posted on 12/04/2007 6:09:31 AM PST by The Bronze Titan
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To: Travis McGee

Very interesting.

6 posted on 12/04/2007 6:10:07 AM PST by STARWISE (They (Dims) think of this WOT as Bush's war, not America's war-RichardMiniter, respected OBL author)
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Huckabee Caught Lying

Huckabee Begs Arkansas Legislature for Tax Increase in May of 2003:

Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee Calls Immigration Reform Legislation Racist, Un-Christian [Update]

AG questions immigration scholarship bill

Immigration bill un-Christian, anti-life, governor says

Mike Huckabee disses Americans, Mexicans, promotes illegal immigration

Dump the Huck He’s not VPOTUS material.

Christians Need To Beware Of Mike Huckabee

Huckabee Raised Taxes More Than Clinton
Dumond case revisited (Huckabee’s parole of a rapist and later murderer)

Huckabee in his own words

Stephanopoulos nails Huckabee on scholarships for illegal alien students;

7 posted on 12/04/2007 6:11:11 AM PST by SUSSA
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His political predictions are worse than the global warming alarmists. Last year, he thought that only Condi Rice could beat Hildebeast in the POTUS election.

Every time I watch Dick Morris on TV, I feel the urge to take a shower to wash off the slime and grime he oozes.

8 posted on 12/04/2007 6:15:51 AM PST by CASchack
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It seems that Huckabee is a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

9 posted on 12/04/2007 6:24:13 AM PST by alicewonders (Duncan Hunter needs to be our next Sec. of Defense, Dir. of Homeland Security - or Vice President)
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"...typical of the always self-promoting Dick Morris."

This is not a question of Morris's self-promotion, but of his recent full court press promoting Huckabee and attacking the same rival (Romney) currently being targeted by Huckabee. And there IS more than this one article noticing this.

Here's Morris on Huckabee in an article yesterday:

"He puts all of the Bible into play," Morris said. "It's not just 'thou shalt not, thou shalt not, thou shalt not,' but it's the positive aspects of his religion, too -- which is 'love thy neighbor,' and 'when I was naked you clothed me,' and a sense of helping poor people."

Huckabee: 'a different kind of Jesus juice'

Here's from an article on Morris's recent pro-Huckerbee anti-Romney campaign with more than a dozen links as evidence:
"I keep seeing articles by Dick Morris which are pro Huckabee and Anti-Romney. So I did some checking and found out that he use to work for Huckabee. Considering he use to work for the Clintons, this seemed troubling to me."

"Dick Morris is attempted to tell Conservatives how to vote. Could it be he is still secretly working for the Clintons. One thing is obvious, Dick Morris is neither fair or balanced.

Is Dick Morris secretly working for Huckabee?

There's more...
10 posted on 12/04/2007 6:26:32 AM PST by drpix
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AH! The Arkansas connection.

11 posted on 12/04/2007 6:31:33 AM PST by Don Corleone (Leave the gun..take the cannoli)
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huckster on the case with the toe sucker... just like his mentor clintoon.


12 posted on 12/04/2007 6:33:05 AM PST by LibLieSlayer (Support America, Kill terrorists, Destroy dims and vote Fred!)
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13 posted on 12/04/2007 6:39:25 AM PST by drpix
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To: drpix
If you can't trust The Music Man, who can you trust?

Those 76 trombones will be delivered any day. Honest.

14 posted on 12/04/2007 6:42:52 AM PST by Travis McGee (
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To: LibLieSlayer

Who’s sucking who’s toes in this relationship.

15 posted on 12/04/2007 6:45:29 AM PST by Nextrush (Uncommitted in 2008 but no John McCain or Ron Paul please)
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To: drpix
...'when I was naked you clothed me,' and a sense of helping poor people."

With other people's clothes and other people's money.

16 posted on 12/04/2007 7:10:10 AM PST by DuncanWaring (The Lord uses the good ones; the bad ones use the Lord.)
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To: Nextrush

Man... that is a mental image that I could do without. Euuuuuw!


17 posted on 12/04/2007 8:15:23 AM PST by LibLieSlayer (Support America, Kill terrorists, Destroy dims and vote Fred!)
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According to The Politico, New York Post columnist and FOX News contributor Dick Morris has been secretly advising former client Mike Huckabee on his Presidential campaign. Morris claims he is acting in an entirely voluntary capacity by simply offering free advice. Keep in mind that nationally syndicated columnist George Will was pilloried by the media when it became public that he had secretly and voluntarily helped Ronald Reagan prepare for his Presidential debates in 1980.

A prominent national GOP insider tells Politics1 that he believes Morris -- despite his claims to the contrary -- is paid for his services through Huckabee media consultant Dick Dresner. According to the source, Morris purportedly gets piece of all Huckabee campaign polling revenues, media commissions and consulting fees through money paid to Dresner's firm.

Explaining the relationship, Huckabee told one GOP pollster: "I feel like I want to take a shower after I meet with him, but Morris is a smart guy and I need him." This is, of course, part of Morris' revenge strategy against the Clintons. The toe-sucking political consultant has never gotten over being fired by President Clinton in 1996 and Morris wants to prove he can put anyone from Arkansas in the White House. Morris was previously Huckabee's consultant during his statewide runs in Arkansas. If these allegations of funneled payments are true, it raises questions as to whether the NY Post will allow a columnist to take fees from those they write about ... and if FOX News will allow their analyst to be taking money funnelled from a Presidential campaign. Most importantly, how will Evangelical voters react to having the escort-using former Bill Clinton strategist secretly directing the Huckabee campaign.

18 posted on 12/04/2007 3:24:41 PM PST by iowamark
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To: iowamark

“This is, of course, part of Morris’ revenge strategy against the Clintons.”

Revenge strategy? He must be dumber than a doorknob. Huckabee as the GOP nominee would be a sure win for Clinton. Big mistake.

19 posted on 12/04/2007 3:29:01 PM PST by SHEENA26
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“Revenge strategy? He must be dumber than a doorknob. Huckabee as the GOP nominee would be a sure win for Clinton. Big mistake.”


20 posted on 12/04/2007 3:44:29 PM PST by stephenjohnbanker (Pray for, and support our troops(heroes) !! And vote out the RINO's!!)
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