Presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee is taking heat today for Holocaust comments that accused President Obama of leading Israel to the “door of the oven.”
The GOP candidate made the remark over the weekend in a radio interview, and reiterated it via Twitter, in response to the president’s hand in arranging a new nuclear and economic sanctions deal with Iran.
“This president’s foreign policy is the most feckless in American history,” Huckabee told the conservative media outlet Breitbart News on Sirius/XM radio Saturday. “He’s so naive he would trust the Iranians and he would take the Israelis and basically march them to the door of the oven.”
The stance drew a range of responses on social media, with some support but also a vocal opposition.
“My murdered ancestors aren’t a g**damn meme-friendly talking point,” wrote one user. “Have you no shame???” wrote another.
Invoking imagery of the Holocaust in political discourse is considered by many in the Jewish community as poor form.
Responding to the accusation, Obama said the remark was part of a pattern of Republican dialogue that would be “considered ridiculous if it weren’t so sad.”
“It doesn’t help inform the American people,” Obama said when asked by reporters about Huckabee’s comments. “These are leaders in the Republican Party.”
In the wake of the blowback, Huckabee seemed to double down, continuing to use Holocaust language as criticism grew. Monday morning he posted to social media, “‘Never again’ will be the policy of my administration.”
Jewish advocacy group the Anti-Defamation League put out its own comments yesterday. Jonathan A. Greenblatt, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:
“Whatever one’s views of the nuclear agreement with Iran – and we have been critical of it, noting that there are serious unanswered questions that need to be addressed – comments such as those by Mike Huckabee suggesting the president is leading Israel to another Holocaust are completely out of line and unacceptable.
“Israeli military and security officials have repeatedly said the Obama Administration has been as strong as any other American administration in keeping Israel secure. Just a year ago, during the war in Gaza, the president signed off on an additional $223 million for Iron Dome anti-missile weaponry to protect the lives of Israeli civilians.
“To hear Mr. Huckabee invoke the Holocaust when America is Israel’s greatest ally and when Israel is a strong nation capable of defending itself is disheartening. The great tragedy of the Holocaust saw the Jews of Europe without allies and without power at the worst possible moment.
“There is a serious debate taking place over the next five weeks within Congress over the Iran deal. We have called on all sides, regardless of whether one is liberal or conservative, to conduct that debate responsibly and civilly. That plea should apply to presidential candidates as well.”