WDEL Blog: Allan Loudell

Least surprising development in G.O.P. Presidential race : Jon Huntsman's withdrawal -- How he was the mirror opposite of Pete DuPont!

It is said - apart from Jon Huntsman being a fluent Chinese speaker - that President Obama named ex-Utah Governor Jon Huntsman as U.S. Ambassador to China, in part, to sideline a possible Republican Presidential opponent.

The President shouldn't have worried. No way could Huntsman ever win favor with likely Republican voters in the early caucuses & primaries. The Republican Party of the 1970's and '80's. Sure. Today? No way. No way could Huntsman sound the proper notes and emotionally connect with the activists in his party.

Let me strike that. Perhaps if there were no Mitt Romney in the race. But with Romney in, Huntsman had no clear path to the nomination. Fluency in a foreign language - particularly the language of a critical adversary - gets you no where in today's Presidential politics.

I watched Huntsman in the G.O.P. Presidential debates. often eloquent, but sometimes he seemed to be in his own little world, bringing up metaphors which would go over people's heads.

Huntsman broke the orthodoxy of today's Republican Party, for example, on the issues of evolution, global warming, and gay/lesbian civil unions.

Paradoxically, he governed as a conservative governor, and received high marks from conservatives as the time. But whereas Pete DuPont shifted from right-of-center moderate to ardent conservative in his shift from Delaware governor to G.O.P. Presidential hopeful, Huntsman journeyed in the opposite direction. So much so, that some left-leaning independents & others embraced Huntsman, as in New Hampshire's Presidential primary.

Only a few days ago, The WASHINGTON EXAMINER examined that transition. Read this and tell me if this doesn't dispel some of your notions about Jon Huntsman...


Some folks wanted Huntsman to run for President as a third party candidate, but that represents a misunderstanding of Huntsman. The former Utah governor will endorse Mitt Romney. It's not about a Mormon endorsing another Mormon. It's about one former governor endorsing another former governor, and the man Huntsman sees as the best shot for restoring a Republican Presidency. Still, some will see this as a bit of a flip considering some of things Huntsman had said about Romney. Political ambition too: Huntsman as Romney's secretary of state?

Posted at 6:59am on January 16, 2012 by Allan Loudell

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Comments on this post:

Mike from Delaware
Mon, Jan 16, 2012 8:36am
Jon Huntsman never did excite the GOP primary voters. I agree that Huntsman might be a good choice as Sec. of State in a Romney administration.

I guess Rick Perry will be next to fad into the sunset once the South Carolina primary is finished, unless he does well in SC.

Mon, Jan 16, 2012 1:14pm
Another one bites the dust!

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