Huckabee Sees Runaway Blimp As Metaphor for 'Our Government'

Susan Jones | October 29, 2015 | 5:32am EDT
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An unmanned Army surveillance blimp floats through the air while dragging a tether line south of Millville, Pa., Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2015. (Jimmy May/Bloomsburg Press Enterprise via AP)

( - "If you saw that blimp that got cut loose from Maryland today, it’s a perfect example of government," former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee said at the Wednesday night debate hosted by CNBC.

"I mean, what we had was something the government made — basically a bag of gas — that cut loose, destroyed everything in its path, left thousands of people powerless, but they couldn’t get rid of it because we had too much money invested in it, so we had to keep it.

"That is our government today. We saw it in the blimp. That's exactly what we saw."

The audience applauded him for the remark.

On Wednesday afternoon, an unmanned Army surveillance blimp came loose from its mooring at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland, floating over Maryland and Pennsylvania, trailing tether lines that took out power lines along the way. As many as 27,000 customers lost power.

Press reports said the runaway blimp floated as high as 16,000 feet, covering 150 miles in about three-and-a-half hours.

Fighter jets trailed it, but did not shoot it down, apparently because of the very expensive (and secret) defense technology on board. The technology is used to detect hostile missiles and aircraft.

The blimp finally came down on its own in at least two pieces near Muncy, a small town about 80 miles north of Harrisburg, the Pennsylvania state capital. No injuries were reported.
Defense Secretary Ash Carter told reporters he has seen this happen before:

"My understanding is, from having seen these break loose in Afghanistan on a number of occasions, we could get it to descend and then we'll recover it and put it back up," Carter said at the Pentagon as the blimp drifted northward. "This happens in bad weather."

It was raining in Maryland, but not windy when the blimp got loose.

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