The Critique of Pure Huckabee

It seems that over the weekend, Mike Huckabee made the following remark about the fact that it's not really possible for him to beat John McCain at this point no matter how many primaries he won:

The pundits say the math doesn't work out. Well, folks, I didn't major in math. I majored in miracles.

This raises some serious questions about Huckabee's philosophy. Normally, the truths of mathematics are regarded as "necessary" truths and one way of explaining that idea is that these are truths that even God couldn't alter. For example, it's true that all squares have four sides because having four sides is part of what it means to be a square. God could make pretty much any kind of five-sided object He cared to, but even He couldn't make a five-sided square because something with five sides just isn't a square. This basic tension between God and math is surely something a minister should be familiar with.

Alternatively, perhaps Huckabee was suggest not a miraculous repeal of the mathematical certainty of his defeat, but rather a form of divine intervention that would make the delegate math irrelevant. It's difficult, however, to see what that could be except for the possibility that McCain might die or suffer some kind of illness or injury that prevents him from accepting the nomination. That doesn't, however, seem like a very Christian thing to wish for. Nor, I might add, is there any real reason to think that even McCain's untimely death would deliver the nomination to Huckabee.

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Matthew Yglesias is a former writer and editor at The Atlantic.

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