Huckabee Defends Record as Arkansas Governor

WASHINGTON - Mike Huckabee says he has the most experience as a governmental chief executive.

The former Arkansas governor is challenging Mitt Romney for first place in the Iowa polls.

Romney is citing his background as a business leader and has begun to portray Huckabee, who also is a Southern Baptist minister, as a lifelong politician.

Huckabee said yesterday that he's been accused of spending too much time as a pastor, and spending too much time as a politician.  He says he's not threatened by those accusations, and that being a lifetime politician means he's got a lot of experience being in charge.

Romney has tried to position himself as the favorite of social conservatives, a critical portion of the GOP base, particularly in Iowa.  Huckabee, however, has capitalized on his resume as a minister and as a reliable conservative.  He has made a big impression on evangelical Christians and has come from behind to effectively tie Romney in Iowa despite spending little and less campaigning than many rivals.

Huckabee appeared on "This Week" on ABC.

(Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)