Moving into the top five nationally, and in a virtual tie with Mitt Romney in Iowa, Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee sees himself on a wave of momentum that has the potential to propel him into the White House.

"I've got their attention, now I've got to rivet them to their seats," a relaxed Huckabee told a crowd of around six hundred at a Des Moines rally. "People want to know why I've captured the attention of Iowa, and how can I translate a good showing here into a successful national campaign. Well, I'll tell you this. It won't be because of the faith issue, even though most of my opponents believe that the earth is older than 6000 years, and that man somehow 'evolved' from primates. And it won't be because of my 'fair tax' platform, because most Americans simply do not have the time to spend studying the intricacies of the tax code. Neither will it be because I am the coolest presidential candidate ever, rocking even harder than the likes of Bill Clinton. It won't even be because I pardoned Keith Richards or because Chuck Norris has got my back, although that sure doesn't hurt."

"No, I will be the next president because I can offer something no other candidate can, human drama. Between now and the Republican Convention, I promise to blow up like a balloon. My goal is to gain at least 150 pounds of pure blubber."

Perhaps Huckabee's greatest accomplishment as Governor of Arkansas was his weight loss of 110 pounds, back in 2003, after he found he could no longer fit through the Statehouse door.

"The people of Arkansas were enthralled," Huckabee said after the rally, talking to reporters at New York Eddie's Steaks and Subs, where he wolfed down an Eddie's Double Decker Philly Cheese. "They were inspired, and they vowed to make personal changes in their own lives. But what if things were to go horribly wrong for me? What if the pressures of the campaign caused me to pack it on like a hippo? That would be pure TV gold, better than Elvis. People would want to see what happens next."

Huckabee is confident that he can reach his goal ("It's only forty pounds beyond where I was before") but is even more excited by what he calls Phase II of his plan. After securing the nomination, he intends to renounce his girth and go on a crash presidential diet plan to end all crash presidential diet plans.

"Just think how excited people get when Oprah tries to lose as little as twenty pounds. Every pound is another headline, with all her fans cheering her on and praying for her success. I believe it's a story that can capture America's imagination, and as I shrink, so will my opponents poll numbers."



2007, Mark Hoback