Scott Brown has some more company among Fox News employees publicly toying with runs for political office while still working for the network.
According to The Washington Post, Fox host Mike Huckabee "might be willing" to take another shot at securing the Republican presidential nomination. Huckabee told the Post that he is considering making a run in 2016 due to the encouragement he is getting "from places where I never got it before," including "business, people some would maybe call the establishment."
In an apparent attempt to drive home his seriousness about a possible run, Huckabee reportedly showed the paper a private poll "which he said was commissioned by supporters who are urging him to run again, which indicated he has the potential to make a strong showing in both Iowa and South Carolina." Huckabee joins John Bolton, who started teasing a potential 2016 run early this year, and Scott Brown, who seems on the verge of running for a Senate seat in New Hampshire, as Fox employees cashing a paycheck while openly considering runs for office.
The revolving door of Republican politicians and Fox News contributors is nothing new.
In the run-up to the 2012 Republican presidential primaries, Fox employed five people that were publicly considering a run: Huckabee, Bolton, Sarah Palin, and eventual candidates Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum. The network was more than happy to continue to give the potential candidates airtime while they decided on a run, allowing them to reach out to Fox's conservative audience while both parties cashed in on the publicity boost.
Media Matters calculated that Fox donated roughly $54.7 million in free advertising in 2010 to the five potential candidates on their payroll. Because he hosts a weekly show on the network, Huckabee led the pack with nearly 48 hours of airtime on the network in 2010 while he mulled a run, amounting to roughly $31 million in free advertising.
Fox is well aware that Huckabee is considering a presidential bid. In March, when Huckabee told conservative outlet Newsmax that he was not ruling out a 2016 run, Fox Nation trumpeted the story:
Fox Nation also picked up a story from Washington Examiner earlier this month about Huckabee considering a run: