It's one thing to draw divine inspiration. But does Mike Huckabee think he's on a divine mission? The NYT's Seelye catches up with him in Columbia, S.C., and explores:

A few days ago, Mr. Huckabee had made a statement at Liberty University that suggested he believed that God had chosen him to become president. A student had asked him to what factor he attributed his surge in the polls.

“It’s not a human one,” Mr. Huckabee had replied, going on to say it was the same one that helped a little boy with two fish and five loaves feed a crowd of 5,000 people. “That’s the only way,” he said, adding that “a lot of people are praying that a little will become much.” He said that pundits who are trying to analyze his rise will never figure it out “until they look at it as an experience beyond human.”

At the Lizard’s Thicket, he raised the question himself in his speech, saying that he is often asked these days to explain his surge. “The honest answer is, I can’t explain it any more than you can,” he told the crowd. “A whole lot of people have started paying attention.”

Asked afterward by a reporter if he was backing off his earlier statement that suggested God was behind his candidacy, he said: “I’m not trying to imply that He’s chosen me because I don’t think he votes. There’s no human explanation for it. I don’t know what it is.” Pressed, he added: “I meant there’s no human an explanation for it,” then turned the question on the reporter. “Do you understand it?” The reporter did not respond, and Mr. Huckabee opened his eyes wide and said, “I don’t either.”

--Michael Crowley