Linder Likes Mike, Not Mitt

Posted December 12, 2007 at 6:14pm

Rep. John Linder (R-Ga.) on Wednesday became the fourth Member of Congress to endorse former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R) for president, joining Reps. John Boozman (Ark.), Bob Inglis (S.C.) and Don Young (Alaska) in the suddenly surging Republican’s column. [IMGCAP(1)]

“The values and character Mike has shown throughout this campaign are reflective of what America should strive to be,” Linder said in a statement. “Most importantly, he has shown that he has the tenacity to confront our nation’s problems head on.”

Several months earlier, Linder had endorsed former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) for the White House. But according to the Web site of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Wednesday, he changed his mind during the summer — but kept it quiet.

In endorsing Huckabee, Linder especially praised the former governor’s support for a Fair Tax, which would scale back the federal income tax and replace it with a consumption tax. According to the Atlanta newspaper, he broke with Romney in part because Romney did not show enough enthusiasm for the plan.

“Mike Huckabee is the only candidate I have seen with the vision and fortitude to bring big ideas to the table, and for that reason, he has my full support,” Linder said.

Romney’s campaign essentially reacted with a shrug.

“Congressman Linder is a good man, a fine legislator and we wish him the best of luck with his decision,” Romney spokesman Kevin Madden said.

— Josh Kurtz and Lauren W. Whittington