On Friday, February 8, Texas Governor Rick Perry, R-Texas has given his endorsement to GOP frontrunner John McCain who statistically speaking is the inevitable nominee of the Republican Party. However, Perry had asked Huckabee to drop out. However, Huckabee had decided the request.
Earlier in the election cycle, Huckabee had asked for Perry’s support. However, Perry said he would support Huckabee if he thought he could win. But, he endorsed Rudy Giuliani instead. When Giuliani dropped out after the Florida primary at the end of January, Perry supported McCain.
After delivering a speech in Washington, DC, to the Conservative Political Action Conference, Huckabee would say to reporters that remaining in the race is good for the Republican Party.
“I’d like to think the Republican Party is mature enough, big enough, and smart enough that it actually knows competition brings excellence. And the lack of competition brings mediocrity,” Huckabee had explained.
He added: “You know the old proverb is as iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. The fact is no boxer is ever prepared to go into the ring if he’s never sparred.”
Huckabee would finish by saying: “If we’re really serious about taking it all the way to November, we better have a candidate who’s truly battle-tested. So this nonsense about how I should step aside and have a cakewalk all the way to the election, that’s crazy. Unless they were all to step aside and let me have a cakewalk, then that would be a fine thing. But otherwise, I can see no value in that at all.”