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2008 Republican presidential candidates Mike Huckabee (File Photo).

TAIWAN: – Former United States presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee on Tuesday said Taiwan and the United States had “more of an organic rather than organisational relationship” even as he spoke around students’ questions about Taiwan’s right to self-determination.

Huckabee was in Taipei as guest of the London International Group and entertained 130 college students’ and other individuals during what lived up to his seemingly light-hearted description of a “question and avoidance” session.

Students were given politically correct and circumlocutory answers to several inquiries relating to the political isolation of Taiwan, internationally, and the stance of the United States to the situation in the face of an increasingly economically powerful China.

China claims the self-governed Taiwan as part of its territory, to be reunited with the mainland, and has said it would retaliate with military force if Taiwan declares political independence.

Treaties bind the United Sates to Taiwan’s defence in the event of hostilities from China, but the United States supports maintaining of the status quo.

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The interaction came at the end of an event dubbed “An Evening with Governor Mike Huckabee”, from which audio or visual recording equipment was banned “to preserve the privacy” of the event.

The former Governor of Arkansas, during an earlier interview dubbed “A Conversation with Governor Mike Huckabee”, spoke of the “unique relationship” between Taiwan and the United States.

Both countries are democracies and create opportunities for their citizens to pursue their dreams, he said.

He said people want liberty and Taiwan’s economic success is a result of this freedom.

“My message is that freedom on a personal level is prerequisite to freedom on a national level,” he said, adding that freedom comes with responsibility. (Go to the homepage to subscribe to I Witness-News)

He noted that he is the first male in his family lineage to graduate from high school and said that running to be the Republican Party’s nominee for the 2008 presidential elections renewed his faith in democratic systems and the American dream.

He said it was “one of the greatest experiences of my life”, adding that he would make a decision about the 2012 presidential elections after midterm elections in the United States in November.

The American dream is not a materialistic quest but an opportunity to dream dreams and see what they would become, he said, adding that success was not as important as having the choice and ability to try.

Huckabee, who has authored seven books, hosts the weekend hit “HUCKABEE” on the Fox News Channel and the “Huckabee Report”, heard three times a day across the United States on the Citadel Media Network.

He said it was disconcerting to know that more Americans pay attention to who is on television than who is running the country, adding that more people have associated him with his television programme than his political undertakings.

He finished second in the Republican primaries and said his campaign was not well-financed nor was he ever a favourite candidate.

“I always believe it was better to lose with your integrity intact,” said Huckabee, who spent a significant part of his early adult life as a pastor and denominational leader.

He said that while some people say “value issues” or “moral issues” have nothing to do with politics, the integrity of citizens of a culture or a society has everything to do with the failure or success of that culture or society.

The cost of governance is directly related to the lifestyle of that government, he said.

Huckabee also addressed several issues of importance to the United States, including healthcare, education, and the crisis on Wall Street.

He said U.S. high schools were graduating students who were functionally illiterate and that something was dramatically wrong when one third of the nation’s student dripped out of high school.

The country has a health crisis rather than a healthcare crisis, he said, adding that the economic meltdown resulted from greed and that it would be an “immense tragedy” if current generations of Americans sacrificed future generations, handing them the world’s largest debt.

He said citizens should “do the right thing” and re-elect administrations that perform well and vote out those that don’t.