They don’t have to like me; they just have to cover me. That’s Mike Huckabee's attitude toward the media, which is doing a lot of publicity legwork for the candidate, says Time’s Michael Scherer. It doesn’t matter if the press corps gives Huck “the cold shoulder,” as long as they show up when he bags a pheasant or gets a shave. The aw-shucks Republican has been expertly utilizing unpaid attention.
Huckabee’s the “photographer’s-best-friend” candidate, deploying a “strategy that takes sober account” of Mitt Romney’s deep pockets in Iowa. Indeed, Huck’s messages have been getting through despite the annoyance of a press filter: The same line that inspired journalistic guffaws—"If you gain the whole world, but you lose your own soul, what does it profit you?"—was a hit with ordinary Iowans.