Huckabee invited behind curtain | Arkansas Blog

Huckabee invited behind curtain

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Gov. Mike Huckabee is mentioned in a new Time magazine article about an influential evangelical political group that prefers to operate under the radar.

It's one of the rings he has to kiss as he prepares to run for the GOP nomination for president.

The least known but one of the most eagerly courted, screening committees for the next G.O.P. presidential nominee met recently in Colorado Springs, Colo., amid the panoramic opulence of the Broadmoor Hotel and Resort. The four-day meeting of affluent Evangelicals was billed as a "summer family retreat," and the kids rode ponies and played water sports while their folks chewed over immigration and gay marriage. The political group, called Legacy, aims for mystique: it has received no media attention and is unknown even on the Web. Yet all the marquee '08 Republican candidates have spoken to Legacy or met with its founders, having come to regard the group as a prime audience in these early days of raising money and trying to conjure momentum. "If you're running for President," said a close associate of President George W. Bush's, "it is the place to go." One of the group's first projects: supplying cash and ground troops to help South Dakota's John Thune beat Senate Democratic leader Tom Daschle in 2004. Thune, a presidential prospect, electrified the Broadmoor audience, which also heard from Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee, Senator Tom Coburn of Oklahoma and Senators Kay Bailey Hutchison and John Cornyn of Texas. ...

Organizers declined to be interviewed, saying they want to continue working below the radar. Cornyn tells TIME that the founders "have been beneficiaries of the political activity of their parents, and want to step up now that they're the next generation in line." Legacy, he says, fills "a vacuum between national organizations and political activists who are grandparents."

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