Jon Huntsman Gets Serious
by Charles Lemos, Mon Apr 18, 2011 at 12:25:07 PM EDT
CNN is reporting that former Utah Governor and soon to be our ex-Ambassador to the People's Republic of China Jon Huntsman is looking at making a serious run at the Presidency focusing his efforts on winning the South Carolina primary. According to CNN, Huntsman's advisers are planning to make a serious play for South Carolina, the early primary state that helped propelled Republican candidates like George W. Bush and John McCain to the GOP nomination.
The conservative-leaning state might seem like a curious place to make a stand for a Mormon ex-Obama administration official who supports same-sex civil unions, but his team is confident that South Carolina Republicans are hungry for a fresh face in a lackluster 2012 field.
“If he gets in the race, from everything I’ve heard, his plan would be to plant a flag in South Carolina,” said longtime Columbia-based strategist Richard Quinn, who helped John McCain win the state’s primary in 2008. “I really think we can win here.”
Quinn is working for Horizon PAC, Huntsman’s campaign-in-waiting, and will steer his presidential bid in South Carolina should the ambassador officially enter the race after his China post concludes on April 30.
He said New Hampshire and South Carolina – two of the four early states that allow independents to participate in their presidential primaries – “are ready for the arrival of a major new player.”
“I think moving from New Hampshire to South Carolina, that’s the traditional path,” Quinn said, mapping out Huntsman’s potential path to the nomination. “No disrespect to Iowa, but New Hampshire and South Carolina are two parts of a three part rocket, along with Florida.”
Huntsman, also a former Utah governor, will return to the United States just before the South Carolina Republican Party sponsors the first Republican presidential debate in Greenville on May 5, but his advisers are doubtful that he will participate.
Jon Huntsman would be a welcomed addition to the GOP field in 2012 if only to provide some adult supervision to that bevy of petulance. And while his chances may seem slim given the GOP electorate's penchant for the sheer insanity of unrepentant birtherism and other inanities, candidates like Jon Huntsman and Mitch Daniels would add some gravitas to the Barnum & Bailey spectacle that the Republican party has become. Without question, unlike the circus the GOP is not the greatest show on Earth despite its entertainment value. It does not serve well the country to have a major political party to simply fly off the rails.
Still the question on my mind is who leaked the Huntsman love letters to President Obama and Bill Clinton?