In Israel, Mike Huckabee Voices Support for Netanyahu's Congress Speech

The Republican presidential hopeful says engaging in nuclear talks with Tehran 'is like trusting a snake.'

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Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee waits backstage before speaking during the Freedom Summit, January 24, 2015, in Des Moines, Iowa.
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee waits backstage before speaking during the Freedom Summit, January 24, 2015, in Des Moines, Iowa. Credit: AP
JTA
JTA

On a visit to Israel, former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee voiced support for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s upcoming address to Congress.

Huckabee, a likely 2016 Republican candidate for president, also dismissed the prospects of ongoing American negotiations with Iran over its nuclear program. To prevent Iran from obtaining a nuclear weapon, he said, America should place heavy sanctions on Iran while maintaining the threat of a military strike.

“Make it very clear [Iran is] not going to have a nuclear weapon, whether it’s economic sanctions or military action, everything is on the table,” Huckabee told reporters on Sunday in Jerusalem. “To negotiate with someone who cannot negotiate with good faith is like trusting the snake. But the snake is still going to bite you when it can.”

Huckabee said Netanyahu should “absolutely” address a joint session of Congress next month on the Iranian program, a speech many have criticized as damaging to the U.S.-Israel relationship. Huckabee said Netanyahu can alert Congress to the nuclear program’s threats, adding that Israel has broad bipartisan support in Congress despite some Democrats’ criticism of the speech.

“America needs to know what those dangers are with Iran,” he said. “He has an opportunity to give a full-throated explanation of the significance of this very delicate situation.”

Huckabee ran for the Republican presidential nomination in 2008, and recently cancelled his talk show on Fox News in order to consider a 2016 run. He said Sunday that he would announce his plans in the spring.

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