TITLE: “What Really Matters”
LENGTH: 30 seconds
AIRING: Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina

SCRIPT: Mike Huckabee: “Are you about worn out by all the television commercials you’ve been seeing, mostly about politics? Well, I don’t blame you. At this time of year sometimes it’s nice to pull aside from all of that and just remember that what really matters is the celebration of the birth of Christ and being with our family and friends. And I hope that you and your friends will have a magnificent Christmas season. And on behalf of all of us, God Bless and Merry Christmas. I’m Mike Huckabee and I approved this message.”

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ANALYSIS: The ad is unusual for a presidential candidate in that it is a religious message that excludes all religions except for the predominant Christian faith. Huckabee, a former Arkansas governor and ordained Southern Baptist minister, is appealing to the Republican Party’s important conservative Christian base, reminding them that he shares their values. Indirectly, the ad also reminds voters in the three early primary and caucus states where it is being aired that Huckabee is a bona fide conservative Christian, unlike former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, who is thrice-married and holds liberal positions on social issues, and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, whose Mormon faith is looked upon skeptically by many Christians.