UNION — Former Arkansas governor and Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee will campaign with fellow Republican and S.C. House District 42 candidate Tommy Mann on Jan. 16.
Mann announced this week that he and Huckabee will hold a campaign rally at 7 p.m. Jan. 16 at First Baptist Church in Union.
“I respect him for his conviction and I support his conservative values,” Mann said Tuesday. “He doesn’t change based on opinion polls. He’s governed by a higher power.”
Mike Huckabee served as the 44th governor of Arkansas from 1996 to 2007. Prior to his election as governor, Huckabee ran unsuccessfully in 1992 for the U.S. Senate seat held by Sen. Dale Bumpers.
That was not the end of Huckabee’s political career, however, as that same year incumbent Arkansas Gov. Bill Clinton was elected president. Clinton resigned as governor and was succeeded by Lt. Gov. Jim Guy Tucker, leaving the lieutenant governor’s office vacant.
Huckabee ran for and won the office in a special election in 1993 becoming only the second Republican lieutenant governor of Arkansas since Reconstruction. He would go on to win a term as lieutenant governor in his own right in 1994.
In 1996, Gov. Jim Guy Tucker resigned after being convicted of arranging $3 million in fraudulent loans in connection with the Whitewater controversy and was succeeded as governor by Huckabee. In 1998, Huckabee was elected to a full term as governor in his own right, becoming Arkansas’ third elected Republican governor since Reconstruction.
He would be reelected again in 2002 and by the time he completed that term in 2007, Huckabee had become the third-longest serving governor in the history of Arkansas, his term of service exceeded only by those of Orval Faubus and Bill Clinton.
Since leaving the governor’s office, Huckabee has ran for the Republican presidential nomination twice, the first time in 2008, and now this year.
Before entering politics, Huckabee a Southern Baptist minister, served as pastor at Immanuel Baptist Church in Pine Bluff, Ark., from 1980 to 1986, and the Beech Street Baptist Church in Texarkana, Ark. He is also a published author who has written or co-authored several books.
Huckabee was hired by Fox News in 2008 as a commentator and contributor to the networks’ coverage of the 2008 presidential election. He also also hosted The Huckabee Report on the radio and the TV show Huckabee on Fox News, ending both shows in 2015 as he was preparing to run for president.
Tommy Mann is a native of Orlando, Fla., who moved to Union in 2008 to begin an eight-year tenure as Associate Pastor at Philippi Baptist Church. He resigned as Associate Pastor to run for the Republican nomination for the S.C. House District 42 seat.
Mann, a graduate of Arlington Baptist College in Fort Worth, Texas, is also a published author whose latest book is “Asleep in Heaven’s Nursery for Kids.” He and his wife, Alicia, have two children, Reagan and TJ.
In addition to his service as Associate Pastor at Philippi Baptist, Mann has served on Union County’s Assessment Appeals Board and as Chairman of Union County’s Comprehensive Health Committee. Most recently, he served as Vice Moderator and then Moderator of the Union County Baptist Association.
Mann’s website (www.voteformann.com) lists the policies he would seek to enact if elected to S.C. House of Representatives including:
• Introduction of the “Life Begins at Conception Act” which would guarantee “the full rights of personhood to the unborn, including their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
Mann also calls for defunding Planned Parenthood and vows to “never cast a vote to approve any budget that gives them one penny of your tax dollars.”
• Support the “Pastor Protection Act” and the “First Amendment Defense Act.”
Mann states that “I want to promise pastors that they can still choose for themselves whom they will marry, and churches can decide for themselves their building reservation policy. But I want to go further than that. I want to promise the business owners that they can continue the free exercise of their religion, not as a matter of hatred, but as a matter of religious conviction.”
• Support the Second Amendment in the Bill of Rights.
Mann states that “every law-abiding citizen has the right to defend himself in the face of those citizens who choose not to obey the law. I strongly support law enforcement, as I come from a long line of Florida’s finest, but I also realize that sometimes every second counts. Citizens should have the right to own weapons in their home, and as a person with my own concealed weapons permit, I believe citizens should have the right to feel safe when they leave home.”
• Keep taxes low, block waste, and “bring my fiscal conservatism to the table when voting for any budget.”
Mann states that “while taxes are necessary, I believe they should be kept low and spent wisely. Most people have no problem paying taxes when they understand that their dollars are used to pay for police officers, fire fighters, teachers, schools, honest civil servants, safe roads, underprivileged children, disabled citizens, and other important necessities. However, most people also cringe at the level of wasteful spending in both Columbia and Washington D.C.”
• Support for Abstinence Education.
Mann states that “I can’t help but laugh when people say abstinence doesn’t work. In fact, abstinence is the only thing that works. With the exception of our Lord’s mother Mary, no abstinent person has ever conceived a child, and their only risk of contracting an STD is non-sexually (thus making the S kind of a moot letter).”
This has been an issue that Mann stated he has dealt with before at the local level.
“There was a movement in Union County to introduce contraception to our students, but as Chairman of the Comprehensive Health Committee, I helped successfully defeat the attempt. Instead we introduced a curriculum called Choosing the Best, which has been quite effective. The year we introduced the new material, Union County led the state per capita in pregnancies among 10-12 year old students. The next year, we led the state in percent of decrease in the same category, and the rates have continually declined. If minors are to receive contraception, that should be a decision left up to parents, not to a State that thinks it is a better parent.”
For more information about Mann, his policies and campaign go to his website is www.voteformann.com.
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090 or [email protected]