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Perkins: 'Values Voter' Issues Still Big Player in '08 Race

Perkins: 'Values Voter' Issues Still Big Player in '08 Race

WASHINGTON – The issues that matter to values voters are still important in the presidential campaign, contends a prominent evangelical leader this week.

Tony Perkins, president of Family Research Council, disagrees with those that suggest that hot issues such as war, terrorism, and the economy has replaced family values on the campaign agenda.

"Candidates like Governor Mike Huckabee, Governor Mitt Romney – who hit these issues head on – are the ones who are attracting the most support," Perkins pointed out, according to OneNewsNow.

The FRC head added that Republican candidate Huckabee started to see his support "skyrocket" after he started to "really" address the core issues "that reach to the hearts of value-voters."

Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor, had spoken abashedly about his views against abortion, gay "marriage," and his support of protecting the freedom of speech of pastors.

"Some things are not negotiable – the sanctity of life, the definition of marriage, the purpose of our freedom and the opportunity to worship as we please," said Huckabee at October's Values Voter Summit. "Let us never sacrifice our principles for anybody's politics not now, not ever," he said to a roomful of applauds.

"We do not have the right to move God's standard to meet the cultural norm but we need to move the cultural norm to meet God's standard," added the former Baptist preacher.

Huckabee had come in first in the on-site Values Voters straw poll, and a narrow second to former Governor Mitt Romney in the overall poll which included online voters.

However, Perkins clarifies that values voters do also care about the economy, war on terror, and other social issues, but their core value is the family – an issue that will not go away in this presidential race, he contends.

The conservative Christian leader alluded to a recent USA Today/Gallup Poll which showed that it would matter a great deal or a moderate amount to 50 percent of voters if a candidate had an extramarital affair.

On the Democratic side, all three top presidential candidates – Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York, Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois, and former Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina – are married to their first spouses. Among the top five Republicans, only Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney have not had multiple marriages.


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