Jon Huntsman in 2012?

While the media is focused on what Sarah Palin is wearing in Miami, and how Bobby Jindal is the GOP’s new “it-boy”, 2012 sleeper candidate Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. of Utah is quietly going about the business of running his state after winning re-election with over 70% of the vote. Huntsman, 48, has built an impressive political resume- he worked as a White House staff assistant in the Reagan Administration, U.S. ambassador to Singapore in the administration of Bush 41, and a deputy United States trade representative in the George W. Bush Administration, all before being elected as Utah’s Governor.

Being from Utah he is predictably conservative on many social issues, but he has been known to be more centrist in other areas. The environment in particular has been an area that he has stressed. "We as Republicans can’t shy away from speaking the word 'environment,' and we shouldn’t shy away from speaking the words 'climate change,'" Huntsman told reporters at a press conference Thursday. "When you’ve got a body of science that already is rendering certain judgments about what is happening in our world, for us to shy away, say it doesn’t matter as an issue, I think is foolhardy, it’s short-sighted and it’s bound to do us damage in the longer-term." He has also talked of reform in the areas of education, health care and energy.

If the GOP is going to stay relevant it needs leaders who are looking to broaden the tent, and environmental issues appeal to many young and swing voters. Even if one thinks the science supporting global warming is suspect, the idea that we need to work to better our environment should not be a hard sell to the party that once lead the way in conservation.

In addition to a solid resume, a strong family and a centrist streak, Huntsman, a keyboard player, is also a self-proclaimed music fan. He even joined REO Speedwagon on stage for two songs during a concert at the Utah State Fair; and we all know what some jamming did for Mike Huckabee this past election cycle.


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People care more about the other "green"

The Left played the Green card north of the border and got hammered,_2008

My prediction is the only people talking about global warming in 2012 will be Republicans blaming Obama's environmental policies for keeping the economy in the tank.

Sorry, this guy sounds too much like Mitt for me.


That's just cause they are both Mormons


FWIW, Huntsman has a much more Presidential feel and presence than Palin or Jindal.  In that way, he is more like Romney.  On the other hand, I'm not aware of him switching his position on a dozen fundamental issues, so he's no Romney clone.

It's good he's getting re-elected with 70%, but it is Utah.  So that has to be discounted a little.  He was also an early supporter of McCain in the primary despite the Utah-Mormon love for Romney.  I know some people will dislike his choice in the primary, but it shows that he did not do the easy thing and endorse his fellow believer and the person whom most of his constituents supported (i.e. like black Democrats who endorsed Hillary).  That shows some independence in his thinking.

If he's interested, I'd give him a strong look.  Does anyone know if he was involved in the universal school choice effort in Utah?