Maybe the term “civil rights” doesn’t mean what Mike Huckabee thinks it means — or “judicial tyranny,” for that matter.

Huckabee took to the network TV airwaves Sunday to invoke President Abraham Lincoln’s crusade against slavery while discussing Davis’ case with “This Week” host George Stephanopolous.

In affirming his support for Davis, the Rowan County, Ky., clerk who refused to allow her office to issue same-sex marriage licenses, Huckabee joined Davis’ lawyer in borrowing a sense of injustice and moral urgency from shameful chapters in world history and repurposing them to justify Davis’ unwillingness to do her legally mandated duty and grant others the ability to exercise their civil rights.

Asked by Stephanopolous to address the opinion of conservatives like Rod Dreher who think Davis’ sworn oath to follow the law, even when it comes to doing the paperwork to officialize unions she opposes for religious reasons, should take precedence over her personal beliefs, Huckabee embarked on an off-roading adventure in historical inaccuracy.

“Well, [Dreher] would have hated Abraham Lincoln,” Huckabee said, “because Lincoln ignored the 1857 Dred Scott decision that said black people weren’t fully human. It was a wrong decision. And to say that we have to surrender to judicial supremacy is to do what Jefferson warned against, which is in essence to surrender to judicial tyranny.”

Huckabee, who is to visit Davis on Tuesday, also told Stephanopolous that “the courts can’t make a law.” (For his part, Dreher has since responded to, and poked substantial holes in, Huckabee’s argument as he articulated it on “This Week.”)

The full clip of Stephanopolous’ interview with Huckabee is posted below. Meanwhile, politicians and pundits would do well to cool it with the Nazi/slavery rhetoric, which all too frequently serves to dilute and contort the meaning of those historical referents.

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–Posted by Kasia Anderson

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