The Huck Tapes

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huckabee-sinner.jpgHanna Rosin has a lovely piece up on Slate today on her search for video and audio tapes of Mike Huckabee’s sermons, when he was a Baptist pastor in Pine Bluff and Texarkana in the 1980s. They may not be, as Rosin says (presumably with tongue in cheek) “the 2008 campaign’s version of the Pentagon Papers, or the Lost Ark,” but they would cast interesting light on the trajectory of a bright young pastor-on-the-make, bathed in the blood of the burgeoning Religion Right and the fundamentalist takeover of the Southern Baptist Convention.
Rosin offers some conjectures about why Huckabee has sent down word to the various keepers of the tapes not to share them with prying reporters, based on interviews with various Arkansans and her hearing of a single tape she procured–on Ebay. Bottom line: Just the image of a young Huck preaching enthusiastically 20 years ago would be enough to give the non-evangelicals among us the willies, if we didn’t have them already. My guess is that there would be–or would have been, earlier in the campaign–a week’s worth of choice quotes and YouTube bites. Nothing to help the cause, for sure. Anyway, check it out.