Huckabee Wanted to Isolate AIDS Patients – in 1992

The story from Yahoo! News:

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Mike Huckabee once advocated isolating AIDS patients from the general public, opposed increased federal funding in the search for a cure and said homosexuality could “pose a dangerous public health risk.”

As a candidate for a U.S. Senate seat in 1992, Huckabee answered 229 questions submitted to him by The Associated Press. Besides a quarantine, Huckabee suggested that Hollywood celebrities fund AIDS research from their own pockets, rather than federal health agencies.

Huckabee said Saturday that his comments came at a time when the public was still learning about HIV and AIDS and promised to do “everything possible to transform the promise of a vaccine and a cure into reality.”

The opposition research must really be working on overtime digging up dirt on Huckabee. Although, this issue doesn’t seem to be all that important. Huckabee had a decent explanation:

Huckabee said in a prepared statement released by his campaign Saturday afternoon that he called for quarantine when there was a lot of confusion about how AIDS is spread. He said he wanted at the time to follow traditional medical practices used for dealing with tuberculosis and other infectious diseases.

“We now know that the virus that causes AIDS is spread differently, with a lower level of contact than with TB,” Huckabee said. “But looking back almost 20 years, my concern was the uncertain risk to the general population — if we got it wrong, many people would die needlessly. My concern was safety first, political correctness last.”

He’s right, isolating dangerous diseases used to be standard operating procedure and the only way to prevent it from spreading and killing millions of people. A reaction to AIDS wouldn’t have been any different at the time. Now we’re too politically correct to even suggest a disease should be quarantined.

I really don’t think this is even news other than a good headline. It would be different if they added in the fact that is was 1992 in the headline like I did. This wasn’t recent policy or a statement from last week, it’s not going to mean much.

Update

Apparently Huckabee was none too keen on homosexuality in the 90s.

Story from The Politico:

Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, surging in Iowa polls in the Republican presidential race, wrote on a questionnaire while running for U.S. Senate in 1992 that homosexuality is “aberrant” and “sinful.”

“I feel homosexuality is an aberrant, unnatural, and sinful lifestyle, and we now know it can pose a dangerous public health risk,” Huckabee wrote in the questionnaire for The Associated Press, which reported the answer on Saturday.

This shouldn’t be that shocking either. Let’s remember, he’s a Southern Baptist evangelical pastor. I say that meaning if he is speaking from a moral position, it’s not surprising he would say this about homosexuality.

I’m sure it will rub some voters the wrong way, mostly liberal voters who wouldn’t be voting for him anyway. But then, the Log Cabin Republicans probably won’t fancy him too much either.