Saturday, April 24, 2010

The Truth Behind The Costs Of RomneyCare

In the national discussion on health care, the issue of cost is bound to come up. The idea of an individual mandate  has always been a controversial issue among conservatives and liberals. It is even controversial among conservatives as well.
The History of Individual Mandates 
In order to understand the current debate on the cost of individual mandates,  one has to understand that some conservatives supported that idea as an alternative to Hilliary Clinton's health care plan for the United States. It was the conservative think tank, Heritage Foundation who came up with the idea. Not all conservatives at the time liked it. The Cato Institute wasn't thrilled with the idea of individual mandates.
Yet, when Obama presented incorporated individual mandates into plan, it brought on universal opposition from conservatives. This has lead some people to believe that conservatives are flip flopping on the issue of individual mandates since they supported it in their opposition to HilliaryCare and are now opposed to RomneyCare, despite the fact that it was based on ideas presented by the Heritage Institute, in order to appear consistent in their opposition to ObamaCare.
While some conservatives are flip flopping on the issue of individual mandates, Mitt Romney opposed HillaryCare for the same reasons he opposed ObamaCare and encouraged the President not to rush the plan into law. Its the same reason Romney is calling for its repeal; each state should have the ability to craft a health care based on the circumstances that are unique to each state. This idea is known as federalism. Thus, the former Governor of Massachusetts has been consistent on his position of health care and individual mandates.
It should be noted that Mitt Romney has never, ever, supported the idea federal mandates. Just because Obama borrowed the idea from the conservative play book during their opposition to HilliaryCare or used  RomneyCare as a template for ObamaCare doesn't mean Obama ever had Romney's blessing or support. Here is Mitt Romney explaining that Obama had never reached out to him for advice: 
"He never gave me a call. Neither he nor any of his colleagues [gave me] a call to ask what worked and did not work, and how would they improve upon it and so forth. If what was done at the state level, they applied at the federal level, they made a mistake. It was not designed for the nation."  (Source)
Furthermore, just because a former employee of Mitt Romney's administration has been hired by the Obama Administration does not mean that it is evidence that Romney supports ObamaCare or that his plan is similar to Obama's. Moreover, it is not proof that Romney even approves of this man's decision to work for the Obama administration. Mitt has no control over how his former employees choose to peruse their careers. He is free to find whatever employment he likes. 
The Current Debate Over The Cost RomneyCare
In the current debate over national health care, many people think that we cannot afford ObamaCare and will point to RomneyCare as evidence of their claim.Those who argue against ObamaCare are partially right about what has happened in Massachusetts. America cannot afford nationalized health care.
Yet they are accusing the wrong man for why Massachusetts why is in financial trouble. Mitt Romney is not responsible for the rising cost of health care in Massachusetts.
A Brief Financial History of The Romney Administration (2003-2007): 
Before Romney unveiled RomneyCare to Massachusetts, he first had to make sure that the state was financially stable enough launch his ambitious health care plan. Getting the state in financial shape was a priority for him because when Mitt entered into office in 2003, he was a left with a massive deficit of approximately $3 billion.

However, Mitt Romney was able to balance the state budget for each year of his administration and got the state out of debt by implementing a mixture of aggressive reduction in the size and cost of government along with bold strategies to spur economic growth.

By 2005, Mitt Romney had a budget surplus of $1 billion and by the time he left office in 2007, he left the state had a $ 2 billion surplus.(Source) In contrast, President Obama did not work to make sure that America was in good financial shape before enacting ObamaCare. He simple went full spead ahead with his health care plan.
Having a budget surplus of $1 billion in 2005 allowed Mitt Romney to confidently to unveil his health care plan in 2006.When Mitt Romney introduced his health care plan on Beacon Hill, he made sure that his proposal wouldn't undermine all his hard work of whipping the state into financial shape. Thus, when his plan was presented, it was estimated to cost less than 1.5% of the state budget. (Source)
RomneyCare could not pass through the democratically controlled state legislature untouched. The democrats inserted eight additional items that made the health care proposal more expensive than Mitt Romney wanted. For example: 
Massachusetts mandates which medical coverage must be included in each insurance policy, including such things as an unlimited number of in vitro fertilization treatments. That inflates costs for everyone. And Massachusetts applies a $295 annual fee on employers for each uninsured employee, which has hurt the business climate in our state. Then-Gov. Mitt Romney's objection to both these measures was overridden by Democrats in the legislature. (Source.)
As explained in a previous post, these two amendments, along with the other six were vetoed by Mitt Romney. Yet the democrats overrode these vetoes. Romney tried to prevent from having extraneous costs inserted to his plan but he lost. That's how legislatives battles go. After unsuccessfully attempting to keep the democrats from modifying his original health care plan, he signed the health legislation on April 12, 2006. As explained before, when Governor Mitt Romney left office in 2007, the state had a $2 billion surplus.
If you just look at RomneyCare on its own, its was doing well. In 2009, Mitt Romney explained that
"When our bill passed three years ago, the legislature projected that our program would cost $725 million in 2009. At $723 million, next year's forecast is pretty much on target. When you calculate all the savings, including that from the free hospital care we eliminated, the net cost to the state is approximately $350 million." (Source)
 Discord Among Conservatives On Cost Of RomneyCare
Despite the impressive record of pulling Massachusetts out of a $3 billion debt, leaving the state with a $2 billion surplus while creating a state health care plan at the same time that was and still is financially stable, not all conservatives are united in their support for RomneyCare when it comes to the issue of cost.
For example, the Cato Insitute is not a fan of it. 
The Club for Growth has flipped flopped in their support for RomneyCare. They used to support it: 
"Governor Romney Deserves Credit For Proposing A Plan That Encourages Individually-Owned Health Insurance..." "Given these limitations, Governor Romney deserves credit for proposing (and to a lesser extent, enacting) a plan that encourages individually-owned health insurance and circumvents some of the inequities carved into the federal tax code." (The Club For Growth, "Mitt Romney's Record On Economic Issues," Press Release, 8/21/2007)
Now Club for Growth is against it. 
Yet, The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation likes it and published a report titled the "Massachusetts Health Reform: The Myth of Uncontrollable Costs." There are several fan over at the Heritage Institute such as Robert Moffit, Ph.D., and Edmund Haislmaier
Thus, individual mandates gets conservative support depending on who you ask. The same was true when conservatives were debating the merits of individual mandates during the national debates over HilliaryCare.
What do Massachusetts Think of RomneyCare?
Whether conservative think tanks support or oppose RomneyCare isn't important. What is important is whether or not the citizens themselves like RomneyCare. A poll in 2008 found this: 
Two years after the implementation of a health care reform law aimed at providing health coverage for nearly all Massachusetts residents, public support for the law remains high.
According to a new poll by the Harvard School of Public Health and the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, over two-thirds (69%) of Massachusetts residents support the law. Just over one in five (22%) oppose the law and approximately one in ten (9%) say they do not know enough about it to give an opinion. Since the law's passage in 2006, public support has increased slightly (69% in 2008 compared to 67% in 2007 and 61% in 2006)
Other signs of public support for the law include the following:
  • 77% support providing subsidized coverage
  • 58% support requiring individuals to have insurance
  • 71% say the law has been successful at reducing the number of uninsured in Massachusetts  
Two years later in 2010, another independent poll found that the people of Massachusetts continue to like Romney's health care plan:
A poll conducted this week by The Washington Post of 880 Massachusetts residents who said they voted in the special election found that 68 percent support the Massachusetts plan. Even among Brown voters, slightly more than half backed the 2006 law. (Source.)
The Truth About The Cost Of RomneyCare
If Mitt Romney's leadership or his health Care plan is not the cause for the current financial crisis in Massachusetts, what is the cause then? It boils down to two things: 
1) The down turn in the economy is hurting the state's ability to collect taxes:
Massachusetts, like other states, has grappled with more than two years of declining revenue as a result of the global economic downturn, which prompted Governor Deval Patrick to make midyear budget cuts four times last fiscal year and once already this year, in October.
2) The Democrats have mismanaged the Commonwealth:
Republican gubernatorial candidate Charles D. Baker Jr., who served as budget chief in the Weld and Cellucci administrations, released a statement yesterday calling the shortfall “just another example of Deval Patrick and Tim Cahill’s fundamental incompetence when it comes to the Commonwealth’s budget.’’
Cahill, the state treasurer, is an independent candidate for governor.
“In the face of the worst economic times since Governor Dukakis, their failure is intolerable,’’ Baker said. “Our state’s budget should be the top priority for the governor and the treasurer, yet time and time again unanticipated spending and rising costs catch both of them off guard.
“Their lack of leadership on the budgetary process is unacceptable, and the taxpayers and business owners of Massachusetts deserve better,’’ he said
3) Another  Health Care Program Unrelated to RomneyCare Is The Problem
Steven C. Panagiotakos, a Lowell Democrat and Senate chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, agreed with Gonzalez that the cost of the state’s universal health care law is unrelated to the latest budget crisis.
He said the latest shortfall is being driven by between $150 million and $200 million in rising costs for MassHealth, a program that predates the universal health care law.
The huge MassHealth program, 60 percent of which is paid for by the federal government, costs the state about $10 billion out of its $27 billion annual budget.
“For us to really control our budget, we have to be able to stabilize MassHealth expenditures,’’ Panagiotakos said. “It’s a huge chunk of our state revenues.’’
Source for #1-3.
It clear that RomneyCare is unrelated to the state’s budgetary problems. The source of the problem appears to be a program called MassHealth which was created long before RomneyCare was ever invented. 
Michael J. Widmer, president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation confirms this fact. He explains that RomneyCare has nothing to do with Massachusetts current financial crisis:
According to the administration, tax revenues have fallen $2 billion below the amounts the fiscal 2009 budget was built upon. And the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center, a left-leaning budget think tank, says the problem has been compounded by permanent tax cuts put in place during the late 1990s.
Adding to these financial woes is an increase in the number of people relying on unemployment benefits as the result of losing their jobs, said Alan Sager, a professor of health policy and management at Boston University.  "The state would be facing a deficit no matter what," Sager said.
So, while the state may be broke, it has little to do with the health care program Mitt Romney put in place over three years ago. Instead, tax revenue shortfalls and a growing reliance on unemployment benefits due to layoffs have put a massive budget burden on the state
The facts are unalterable. Romney was a fiscial conservative who was able to balance the state budgets for every year of his single term as governor. He cut taxes, reduced spending and was able to create a financially sound health care plan in one of the most liberal states in America.
If Massachusetts is having  financial problems four years after Romney left them with a rainy day fund surplus of $2 billion, then facts lead us to conclude that it has something to do with the democratic leadership that is there currently. But we don't need to make any inferences about what has happened in that state. The evidence clearly demonstrate that the current problems in Massachusetts are due to the fact that the Democrats are not managing Mitt Romney's health care plan the way it was originally intended. 
Therefore, we can hardly blame Mitt Rommey or RomneyCare for the current problems. The problems lies completely with the Democrats who squandered the $2 billion surplus.

Friday, April 16, 2010

What Is The Future of The T.E.A. Party Movement?

A lot of attention has been given to the T.E.A. party recently in the media as a result of the current debate over health care reform, the 2010 midterm elections and the influence this group has on politics today as well as in the future.
Who Are The T.E.A. Partiers? 
One would think that this group of people are easy to understand. People are angry with our government because it is creating debt at an unprecedented rate while ushering in a new era of unprecedented government expansion into the daily lives of Americans. And who is financing all of this? The American taxpayer. And who will be forced to suffer the consequences of the poor decisions made by our elected representatives? The American taxpayer.
Yet, despite all the media coverage about the T.E.A party movement, it is still an enigma to members of the general public. As CNN points out, "the Tea Party movement, now in its 14th month, is not well-known to nearly half the country. Forty five percent of all Americans say they do not know enough about the Tea Party to say whether they support it or oppose it. Those who are familiar with the movement are divided right down the middle - 27 percent support the Tea Party movement, and 27 percent oppose it." (Source.)
This movement, is only in its infancy. But its growing:
"the number of people who say they’re part of the Tea Party Movement nationally has grown to 24%. That’s up from 16% a month ago, but the movement still defies easy description."(Source.)
Facts About The T.E.A. Partiers 

The most important and easiest thing to understand is that pols show that the T.E.A. party movement is not some fringe group but made up of Americans of all walks of life:
The national breakdown of the Tea Party composition is 57 percent Republican, 28 percent Independent and 13 percent Democratic, according to three national polls by the Winston Group, a Republican-leaning firm that conducted the surveys on behalf of an education advocacy group. Two-thirds of the group call themselves conservative, 26 are moderate and 8 percent say they are liberal. (Source.) 
The Winston Group found, in three national surveys conducted from December through February and published April 1, that the Tea Party movement is composed of a broad cross-section of the American people -- 40 to 50 percent of its supporters are non-Republicans. Indeed, one-third of self-identified Democrats say they support the Tea Party movement.(Source.)
Tea Party supporters skew right politically; but demographically, they are generally representative of the public at large. That's the finding of a USA Today/Gallup poll conducted March 26-28, in which 28% of U.S. adults call themselves supporters of the Tea Party movement. (Source.)
Getting Involved In Politics Is Not A Wise Idea

Given that this movement is growing, what should the T.E.A. Party be doing right now?

First let us discuss what they should not be doing. 
Some people believe that this movement might form into an alternative third political party. It is not a political party. And neither should it form into one. Those who leave the two major parties are relegating themselves to political irrelevance. Ross Perot's Reform Party and  Theodore Roosevelt's Bull Moose Party have faded into political obscurity. 
Neither should the T.E.A Party be endorsing those who wish to get into political office. Politicians who rely only on the support of the Tea Party movement have yet to win an election. Debra Medina, Patrick Hughes, Adam Andrzejewski, Doug Hoffman, Larry Naritelli, and J.D. Hayworth are all T.E.A Party favorites who are or will fizzle into the footnotes of political history.
If this political movement cannot and should not be in the business of forming a political party or actively supporting candidates for political office, what should the T.E.A movement do? 

Trust And Credibility 
In order to answer that question, consider that a recent poll shows that the T.E.A. party has more credibility with the American party than politicians in Congress:  
The latest Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 52% of U.S. voters believe the average member of the Tea Party movement has a better understanding of the issues facing America today than the average member of Congress. Only 30% believe that those in Congress have a better understanding of the key issues facing the nation.
When it comes to those issues, 47% think that their own political views are closer to those of the average Tea Party member than to the views of the average member of Congress. On this point, 26% feel closer to Congress.
Finally, 46% of voters say that the average Tea Party member is more ethical than the average member of Congress. Twenty-seven percent (27%) say that the average member of Congress is more ethical.
I don't think the T.E.A party realizes the significance of what this means. It means that Americans are staring to trust one another. They are looking to their friends, neighbors, co-workers and fellow church goers for answers to the challenges of this country. They are starting to realize that they can no longer look to the federal or state government for answers. That is why the T.E.A. party movement is growing and getting more stronger everyday. That is why the general public is starting to believe this movement rather than the government when it comes to solving the financial issues that face our country.
Trust is the one thing that that the media, politicians and our public education system do not have.

This is what the founding fathers wanted. They set up a government whereby people were free to rely on one another and not to rely on the government. They wanted citizens to be the ones on the watchtower to warn of threats to our freedoms. They wanted Americans to teach each other about the Constitution and what our country is all about.

If we simply protest just to change the laws, endorse political candidates or form a third party, such actions will only bring a temporary halt to the growth of government. No meaningful or lasting change will come from it.

To make a permanent change in America and restore this country to what it was created to be, we need to change the hearts, mind and soul of every person in the United States. When that happens, society changes. And when society changes, the government is transformed because it will reflect the heart, mind and soul of the citizens.
Thus, the T.E.A. parties should just be doing what it is doing now. Organizing. Protesting. And most importantly, educating. 

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Who Is Ron Paul?

Ron Paul has been getting positive press in the news lately. Recently, he won the 2010 CPAC straw poll and came in second at the 2010 Southern Republican Leadership Conference
Recently, a  Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey have revealed some surprising and yet disappointing facts about how the American people view Ron Paul.  Among the many things that the survey found was that:
"thirty-nine percent (39%) of all voters have a favorable opinion of Paul, while 30% view him unfavorably. This includes 10% with a very favorable opinion and 12% with a very unfavorable one. But nearly one-out-of-three voters (32%) are not sure what they think of Paul."
Perhaps the most disturbing part of this survey is that:
"just 42% of Republican voters have a favorable view of him, including eight percent (8%) with a very favorable opinion. By comparison, 42% of unaffiliated voters regard him favorably, with 15% very favorable toward him.
Twenty-six percent (26%) of GOP voters think Paul shares the values of most Republican voters throughout the nation, but 25% disagree. Forty-nine percent (49%) are not sure.
Similarly, 27% of Republicans see Paul as a divisive force in the party, while 30% view him as a new direction for the GOP. Forty-two percent (42%) aren’t sure.
Among all voters, 19% say Paul shares the values of most Republican voters, and 27% disagree. Fifty-four percent (54%) are undecided."
As a conservative myself, I find this study to be troubling. 
I'm not sure the American public really knows who who this man is. 
Their positive opinions about him would change if they knew about Ron Paul's dangerous flirtation, if not outright alliance, with white supremacists and other fringe groups. This fact is well documented to the point that it is undeniable
I'm sure people's opinon would change if they saw pictures of Ron Paul standing next to a well known member of the white supremacist movement. In fact, here's a picture of Ron Paul with Don Black, and his son: 
If you don't know who Don Black  is, you should. He's the founder of the white supremacist website
Ron Paul sees no problem with having a photo taken with a well known racist and has never returned a $500 campaign donation given to him by Don Black. When this issue was raised, Ron Paul tried to act like the issue was no big deal.
Moreover, during the 2008 election, it came to the attention of the media that Ron Paul had a newsletter in his name that contained a lot of hateful language towards homosexuals and African Americans. 
Ron Paul denies that he didn't write these racist stuff but as one blogger points out:
"Rep. Paul is trying to say that the words above weren’t written by him (but rather someone else helping him with his newsletter), but c’mon. Let’s be serious. If they appeared in his newsletter attributed to him then he’s responsible."
If that isn't enough to convince people about who Ron Paul really is, maybe they would stop supporting him once they see this open letter from another well known white Supremacist, Bill White. Here's what he had to say about Ron Paul:
I have kept quiet about the Ron Paul campaign for a while, because I didn't see any need to say anything that would cause any trouble. However, reading the latest release from his campaign spokesman, I am compelled to tell the truth about Ron Paul's extensive involvement in white nationalism.
Both Congressman Paul and his aides regularly meet with members of the Stormfront set, American Renaissance, the Institute for Historic Review, and others at the Tara Thai restaurant in Arlington, Virginia, usually on Wednesdays. This is part of a dinner that was originally organized by Pat Buchanan, Sam Francis and Joe Sobran, and has since been mostly taken over by the Council of Conservative Citizens.
I have attended these dinners, seen Paul and his aides there, and been invited to his offices in Washington to discuss policy.
For his spokesman to call white racialism a "small ideology" and claim white activists are "wasting their money" trying to influence Paul is ridiculous. Paul is a white nationalist of the Stormfront type who has always kept his racial views and his views about world Judaism quiet because of his political position.
I don't know that it is necessarily good for Paul to "expose" this. However, he really is someone with extensive ties to white nationalism and for him to deny that in the belief he will be more respectable by denying it is outrageous -- and I hate seeing people in the press who denounce racialism merely because they think it is not fashionable.
Bill White, Commander
American National Socialist Workers Party
Who is Ron Paul? He's one scary dude.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Mike Huckabee Has No Problem With Having An Atheist For President?

Mike Huckabee recently gave an interview to reporters of a news magazine called The Perspective in which he makes this eyebrow raising statement that was published yesterday: 
In what may come as a surprise for some, Huckabee agreed that an atheist could be fit to serve as president. “I’d rather have an honest atheist than a dishonest religious person,” he said.
“It’s better to have a person who says, ‘Look, I just don’t believe, and that’s where my honest position happens to be,’” he said. “I’m frankly more OK with that than a person who says, ‘Oh, I am very much a Christian. I very much love God.’ And then they live as if they are atheists, as if they have no moral groundings at all. That’s more troubling.”
“I think it’s nice if a person believes in God,” Huckabee said. “I’d hate to think somebody was making decisions who thought that he couldn’t be higher than himself.”
Apparently Mike Huckabee fine with having an atheist for President. 
Yet he has never been thrilled with the idea of having a Mormon for President.
Mike Huckabee engages in the classic pattern of "passive aggressive" behavior. Its his modus operandi of how he campaigns. 
Passive aggressive behavior is when someone does something and then denies the very act that they just did. Thus, it becomes difficult to pin down the bad behavior on the person.  
Sometimes its is clearly obvious when people are acting in this way. For example, remember that time when Huck claimed he was too classy to show the deceptive negative ad he made against Romney, then showed it to the national press knowing they would give it lots of free airplay?
Yet, Mike Huckabee engages in the most devious form of passive aggressive behavior when it comes to attacking Mitt Romney's faith. He engages in activity in which everything appears innocent and legitimate on the surface.However, underneath the surface is the malicious intent to do harm against the intended target without being detected.
There are numerous examples of this kind passive aggressive behavior. For example, during the Iowa 2008 primaries, implicitly made Romney's faith an issue in a campaign ad:
On Monday, Mr. Huckabee, a former governor of Arkansas, raised the stakes when he began broadcasting an advertisement in Iowa that emphasizes his faith and declares him to be a “Christian leader” — all in capital letters — which some might view as a shot at Mr. Romney.
Chip Saltsman, Mr. Huckabee’s campaign manager, said the campaign had no intention of making any kind of allusion to Mr. Romney’s being a Mormon, saying the idea was simply to introduce Mr. Huckabee to Iowans.
On the surface, Mike Huckabee is just simply "introducing" himself to the Iowan voter. This gives him plausible deniability since it allows him to stay clean from the accusation of playing the Mormon card since he's just running a campaign ad.
Yet, when asked about the fact that Huckabee is playing up his Christian credentials in capital letters as a quiet and indirect attack on Romney's Mormonism, his campaign manager, Chil Saltsman denies it. 
That's classic passive aggressive behavior. 
Again, we see this same passive aggressive behavior in another campaign ad. Remember the "floating cross" commercial? 

Mike Huckabee defended his commercial by claiming that the floating cross was merely a bookshelf. This gives the former Arkansas governor plausibility since he's claiming that the light is just shining on a piece of furniture.

That's one possible interpretation.And that's the one Huckabee hoped people believed.

Yet, The floating cross could be seen as a quiet and indirect attack on Romney's Mormonism by subtly playing up Huckabee's Christian credentials.

See how hard it is to pin Huckabee down for his anti-Mormon attacks? Classic passive aggressive behavior.

However, Mike Huckabee was a little more aggressive in his passive aggressive behavior. His defense is really an office since he attempts to make anyone who points out the obvious, the cross, look like an idiot. They must be crazy for seeing something that isn't there. And thus, the accuser has to go on the defense and prove that the cross is really what Huckbee intended for people see. 
Very devious passive aggressive behavior. 
The final example is his now infamous interview with the New York Times magazine
Huckabee was asked if he considered Mormonism a cult or a religion. "I think it's a religion," he said in the interview, published on the newspaper's Web site on Wednesday. "I really don't know much about it."
Then he asked: "Don't Mormons believe that Jesus and the devil are brothers?"
Mike Huckabee denied that the quote was accurate yet Zev Chafets, the reporter who interviewed Huckabee, explained how it all went down:
“I asked Huckabee, who describes himself as the only Republican candidate with a degree in theology, if he considered Mormonism a cult or a religion. 'I think it’s a religion,' he said. 'I really don’t know much about it.'
Chafets wrote next: “I was about to jot down this piece of boilerplate when Huckabee surprised me with a question of his own….”
Reached Wednesday in Cooperstown, N.Y., where he’s writing a book on the National Baseball Hall of Fame, Chafets told Politico: “I asked him the question about Mormonism and whether he thought it was a religion or a cult.
“He said it was a religion, and didn’t know much about it. There was a pause. Then he asked his question,” Chafets continued.
“He can spin it any way he wants. It was on the wires and picked up by candidates, and I can’t be accountable for that,” Chafets said, adding, “I hope that the article, as I wrote it, was entirely in context.”
Lieberman said she also understood that Huckabee’s question “was an unbidden response.”
Huckabee ultimately apologized for the remarks made in the New York Times interview. 
Here, Huckabee was blunt in his attack on Romney's faith. This is where Huckabee over played his hand in his passive aggressive tactics.  You can't be claiming “ignorance” on a subject but immediately demonstrate knowledge of LDS theology and then trying to distance yourself from the interview. He tried to retreat into his familiar pattern of passive aggressive tactics by first denying his statements and then apologizing for it. But it was too much, too late.
The New York Times interview blew Mike Huckabee's passive aggressive stance towards Mitt Romney's Mormonism. It also revealed his animus towards the LDS religion.
The whole scenario was offensive. Mike Huckabee claimed he didn’t know about LDS doctrine and yet he immediately gave himself away by asking about a very specific and minor doctrine of the LDS Church all in the same breath.
The average citizen in the United States doesn't know about the Satan as Jesus brother doctrine. The only way some knows about this minor LDS doctrine is if they have studied the LDS faith or is a member of that faith. It is isn't doctrine that is common knowledge to the general public. You have to be well studied in LDS theology to be aware of this particular belief.
It was the faux innocence of Huckabee's question that upset a lot people, including the Mormons themselves.
There is a history behind it–many Evangelical Protestants dismiss the LDS church as a cult, and Huckabee knew that. He was not asking an innocent question, he was warning the religious bigots away from his competition. 
What was the point of brining up this theological belief of Mormons if it wasn't to scare Christian voters away from Mitt? Why even bring that up? I mean, really? It’s not like it is in England where the prime minster pick’s the next Archbishop of Canterbury. The President of the United States is not involved the religious affairs of the nation.
The passive aggressive facade of playing clueless on LDS theology didn’t go over very well because its hard to believe that a former Arkansas governor and former Baptist minister doesn't know much about the LDS faith yet he was the one who gave the keynote address at the Baptist Convention in Salt Lake City in an effort to convert Mormons away to the Baptist faith.
Richard Cohen, in an opinion editorial at the Washington Post made an astute observation about Mike Huckabee:
Pardon me for saying so, but that is the chief difference between the two. On about all the social issues you can name -- abortion, stem cells, gun control -- Huckabee and Romney are in sync. So their religious differences are not about morality. They are about belief -- religious belief, precisely the issue that is not supposed to matter in this country. Huckabee, though, clearly thinks it ought to. 
When Mike Huckabee says he has no problem with having an atheist being President of the United States, its hard to believe him.One would think that having a atheist for a President would be more troublesome to a Baptist than having a Mormon as the political leader of America. But if he's fine with an atheist in the White House, then he should have no objections if Romney beats Obama in 2012, right?
Given his passive aggressive attacks against Mtt's faith in the 2008 presidential elections, don't hold your breath for Huckabee endorsing of Romney in the next Presidential election.