Monday, December 17, 2007

The front-runners: Mike Huckabee

Speaking of Huckabee, Washington Post writer Liz Clarke fielded a question from me as the first item in her online discussion about the GOP candidate today at
Arlington, Mass.: In part because of his own experience with successful weight loss, Gov. Huckabee paid more attention than most governors do to food policy -- how public policy can support a healthy food environment, for example. This fall, we just suffered another disappointing reformless Farm Bill. Do you think Huckabee would be more likely than other candidates to support a new direction in food and farm policy?

Liz Clarke: That's an interesting question. Let's start here. In my time speaking to Gov. Huckabee, reading his books and interview transcripts, this didn't come up. But from what I learned, I would guess that he would be more proactive than some others. Largely because of his own experience, having been diagnosed with Type II diabetes and warned that his lifestyle and eating habits were on the way to sending him to an early grave, he did become more pro-active about how public policy can help steer people to a healthier lifestyle. He favors a shift in health-care spending to preventive care. And has spoken about finding ways to reward people for healthy lifestyles--lifestyles, specifically, that will save taxpayers money in the long run.

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