Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee met with prominent evangelical supporter Dr. James Dobson in a one-hour close-door meeting while in Colorado for a paid speaking event Friday.
The two Christian leaders, who have been friends for 14 years, refused to disclose the specifics of their discussion, revealing only that it was an informal "personal meeting." Dobson had endorsed Huckabee two weeks ago after former Republican candidate Mitt Romney suspended his campaign.
"This was a long-planned private conversation between two friends and Dr. Dobson wanted to keep it that way," said Gary Schneeberger, a Dobson spokesman, according to The Associated Press. "It's certainly not meant to temper his support of the governor."
The presidential candidate was in Colorado to speak at the Leadership Program of the Rockies, a bi-partisan conservative training forum for political activists. When questioned why he left the campaign trail for the second paid speaking event in a week he responded:
"If I were a sitting senator, I would be expected to be in Washington, that's how I would get my paycheck," Huckabee said to reporters, and about 25 supporters. "Unfortunately, the people I'm paying to be sitting senators aren't showing up at their desk," he said, taking a swipe at presidential candidates John McCain, Barack Obama, and Hillary Clinton – all sitting U.S. senators.
"You know, if you don't show up at work, you get fired. These guys aren't showing up for work and are expecting us to give them a better job."
Huckabee had said last week when attending a paid speaking event in the Caribbean that he needed to attend such conferences to pay his bills.
The former Arkansas governor, although badly trailing McCain, remained optimistic about his candidacy and said he would keep fighting for Colorado delegates.
"There's 46 delegates at stake in Colorado that could be mine," Huckabee said to cheering supporters, referring to the state delegates won by Romney.
Dick Wadhams, Colorado chair of the Republican Party, said the Feb. 5 caucus where Huckabee came in third after Romney and McCain was a "preference poll" and the delegates are still up for grabs, according to AP.
The former Arkansas governor appeared in a "Weekend Update" segment of "Saturday Night Live" where he said he won't "overstay his welcome."
He described his confusion over whether it is mathematically impossible for him to win the nomination over front-runner John McCain.
"I'm not a math guy, I'm more of a miracle guy," he responded to anchorman Seth Meyers who explained the numbers. "So at this point I'm gonna focus on the miracle part."
However, he said, "Mike Huckabee does not overstay his welcome. When it's time for me to go, I'll know. And I'll exit out with class and grace."
Then he remained seated at the "Update" desk even though Meyers made it clear it was time for him to leave, according to AP.
"SNL" is known for its political humor.
Currently, Huckabee has 254 delegates compared to McCain's 958 delegates out of the 1,191 needed to win the nomination. Romney, who dropped out of the race earlier this month, had collected 280 delegates and has endorsed McCain.