Monday, January 31, 2011

Huntsman '12?

Former Utah Governor, current ambassador to China Jon Huntsman (R) may be gearing up for a 2012 presidential run. At the very least, he's not shooting down rumors that his ambitions lie in that direction.

I've previously identified Huntsman as a leader of the "not insane" wing of the Republican Party -- possibly its last man standing, with the immolation of Charlie Crist. So I have a lot of respect for him. But I can't fathom how the Socialist Kenyan regime's ambassador to the Socialist Chinese regime plans on getting through a Republican primary. I'm baffled as to why Huntsman -- who will only be 56 in 2016 -- wouldn't wait until then for what I'd imagine to be a much cleaner shot at the White House.


joe said...

Nate Silver already covered this talking point's bit of conventional wisdom. Basically, no matter how long the odds of actually being nominated, you gotta play to win.

David Schraub said...

I think that Tommy Thompson is an excellent example of the risks of waiting too long. Nonetheless, it's hardly the case that it's always better to jump into the fray when the primary field is stacked against you. It's notable that, outside of John Edwards, none of the major 2004 Democratic contenders were considered to be significant factors in the 2008 nomination. With Palin, there's no reason to think 2016 will be a better playing field than 2012. With Huntsman, there is a lot of reason to believe that 2016 is the superior choice.

joe said...

That's notable in the same sense that Republicans nominating people (Dole, Bush, McCain... even the Reagan himself) who've already lost it once before is notable. To be sure, I think the "next in line" hierarchy is a gross simplification, but it still doesn't seem like taking a long shot in one cycle really closes off one's options four years later. And in the simplest statistical modeling, it can only really help. Particularized to Huntsman, it still seems like he can only shave the odds in his favor (he's probably a long shot to win in any year since you don't get the GOP nomination being the conservative liberals kinda like); maybe Palin runs, but maybe she implodes in New Hampshire. Maybe working for Obama will earn him a lot of scorn, but do we really think that Republicans will decide they're much more okay with that in 2016 if Obama is reelected? Four more years of the artistic "expressions" of Rush, Glenn, and Sean would suggest not.