Republican presidential candidate and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee came out in support of the Duggar family, stars of reality television show "19 Kids and Counting," after Josh Duggar admitted to child molestation charges.
"Janet and I want to affirm our support for the Duggar family," Huckabee wrote Friday in a Facebook post. "Josh's actions when he was an underage teen are as he described them himself, 'inexcusable,' but that doesn't mean 'unforgivable.'"
"No purpose whatsoever is served by those who are now trying to discredit Josh or his family by sensationalizing the story," Huckabee continued. "Good people make mistakes and do regrettable and even disgusting things."
The eldest of Jim Bob and Michelle Duggar's 19 children, Josh Duggar said Thursday that allegations that he had molested several underage girls when he was a teenager were true, and in a Facebook post he wrote that he had "acted inexcusably" and was "extremely sorry." The Facebook response from the Duggar family came after In Touch magazine published a 2006 police report that claimed Josh Duggar had sexually molested five girls as far back as 2002.
The Duggar family recent gave their endorsement to Huckabee, posting on Facebook that "America needs Governor Huckabee for president!"
The 2016 candidate has also prominently depicted the Duggars' endorsement on his campaign website:
Huckabee added that he and his wife "love Jim Bob and Michelle and their entire family," and criticized the "blood-thirsty media" for publicizing the scandal.
"The reason that the law protects disclosure of many actions on the part of a minor is that the society has traditionally understood something that today's blood-thirsty media does not understand--that being a minor means that one's judgement is not mature," Huckabee wrote. "No one needs to defend Josh's actions as a teenager, but the fact that he confessed his sins to those he harmed, sought help, and has gone forward to live a responsible and circumspect life as an adult is testament to his family's authenticity and humility."
"Today, Janet and I want to show up and stand up for our friends," the former Arkansas governor reiterated. "Let others run from them. We will run to them with our support."
Duggar, now 27 and married with three children of his own, recently resigned from his job with the Family Research Council after the molestation charges came to light.