Carol Platt Liebau: Another Slippery "Man from Hope"?

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Another Slippery "Man from Hope"?

Remember Bill Clinton's famous "it's a matter of what the meaning of 'is' is"? Well, Look at how thinly Mike Huckabee slices the baloney when Chris Wallace asked him about his support for a "pathway to citizenship" for illegals on Fox News Sunday and ask yourself if there must be something in the water in Hope, Arkansas:

WALLACE: ... a border fence, for cracking down on employers, for telling illegals to go home.

But last year in an interview, you said something somewhat different. You said this, "I think that the rational approach is to find a way to give people a pathway to citizenship."

Governor, in your new plan, the only path is to go home and to get on the back of the line, which, of course, would mean years of waiting. Why the change?

HUCKABEE: Well, I don't think there's an inconsistency. When I said a pathway, I didn't say what the pathway was.

I now believe that the only thing the American people are going to accept — and, frankly, the only thing that really makes sense — is a pathway that sends people back to the starting point.
(emphasis added)

In other words, it's just a matter of what the meaning of "pathway to citizenship" is. Who knew that when Mike Huckabee supported a "pathway to citizenship" back in May, what he really meant was that the pathway ran through the illegals' home country?

It's reminiscent of Bill Clinton in 1992 talking about the vote for the first Gulf War, and saying that he would have voted for the war, but he agreed with the arguments of the people who voted against it. Apparently, according to what he says now, Mike Huckabee supports a "pathway to citizenship," but he would require illegals to go home and start over in order to become citizens.

Obviously, that makes no sense, because that's what, in theory, current law requires. So did Huckabee not know this, or is he just being disingenuous, in the finest Clintonian tradition?

Update: As Hugh Hewitt points out, Huckabee played the same semantic games with the word "quarantine."


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