Mike Huckabee got some laughs -- but raised eyebrows -- with an attempt at humor at the National Rifle Association conference this afternoon in Kentucky.
There was an unexpected slam offstage while Huckabee was speaking, and he said, “That was Barack Obama, he just tripped off a chair, he's getting ready to speak. Somebody aimed a gun at him and he dove for the floor.”
The former Arkansas governor was adept at one-liners and quips before dropping out of the Republican race and since in his job as commentator.
But some of Obama's supporters have been publicly and privately worried about his safety given the assassination of other figures, such as John and Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King Jr. Obama started receiving Secret Service protection last May -- the earliest ever for a presidential candidate -- after urgings from supporters.
UPDATE: Huckabee tonight issued a statement of apology:
"During my speech at the NRA a loud noise backstage, that sounded like a chair falling, distracted the crowd and interrupted my speech. I made an off hand remark that was in no way intended to offend or disparage Sen. Obama.I apologize that my comments were offensive, that was never my intention."
About Political Intelligence
Glen Johnson is Politics Editor at boston.com and lead blogger for "Political Intelligence." He moved to Massachusetts in the fourth grade, and has covered local, state, and national politics for over 25 years. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @globeglen.