“I will not be a candidate for president next year,” says Mississippi GOP Governor Haley Barbour, a former lobbyist and former chairman of the Republican Governors Association. Stating, ”A candidate for president today is embracing a 10-year commitment to an all-consuming effort, to the virtual exclusion of all else,” Barbour added, “His (or her) supporters expect and deserve no less than absolute fire in the belly from their candidate. I cannot offer that with certainty, and total certainty is required.”
What Haley Barbour is certain of, however, is his position on gay rights, such as marriage equality and “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” While he sees working with gays as “no big deal to me,” Barbour is flat-out anti-same-sex marriage. Barbour “has long opposed gay marriage,” according to The Huffington Post, and Politico adds that “a Gallup poll found that Mississippi was the most conservative state in the nation,” noting that “a 46% plurality of registered Republican voters [in Mississippi, Barbour's home state,] said they thought interracial marriage was not just wrong, but that it should be illegal.”
Additionally, Barbour told the American Family Association he would reinstate ”Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT), stating soldiers don’t need any “amorous situation” in the theater of war.
Last year, Barbour faced criticism after “his praise of “Citizens’ Councils,” segregationist groups that resisted integration through economic and political pressure,” according to CBS News.
Here is Barbour’s full statement:
I will not be a candidate for president next year. This has been a difficult, personal decision, and I am very grateful to my family for their total support of my going forward, had that been what I decided.Hundreds of people have encouraged me to run and offered both to give and raise money for a presidential campaign. Many volunteers have organized events in support of my pursuing the race. Some have dedicated virtually full time to setting up preliminary organizations in critical, early states and to helping plan what has been several months of intensive activity.
I greatly appreciate each and every one of them and all their outstanding efforts. If I have disappointed any of them in this decision, I sincerely regret it.
A candidate for president today is embracing a ten-year commitment to an all-consuming effort, to the virtual exclusion of all else. His (or her) supporters expect and deserve no less than absolute fire in the belly from their candidate. I cannot offer that with certainty, and total certainty is required.
This decision means I will continue my job as Governor Mississippi, my role in the Republican Governors Association and my efforts to elect a new Republican president in 2012, as the stakes for the nation require that effort to be successful.
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