Steve Benen: ….I can appreciate all of the reasons to take Jon Huntsman seriously as a candidate ….. but Huntsman is a moderate in an era when Republicans don’t like moderates.
Huntsman believes “health care is a right” …. He believes climate change is real and endorsed a cap-and-trade plan to address is …. He supported an individual mandate as part of health care reform … Republicans are on the opposite side of all of these issues. .. Oh, and he’s also a former member of the Obama administration who called President Obama a “remarkable leader.”
The Republican base has gone to great lengths to target so-called RINOs (Republicans in Name Only) … We’re to believe this same base will tolerate a moderate as their presidential nominee? Sure, Huntsman will start engaging in Romney-like flip-flops and try to reinvent himself. And sure, the media’s sycophantic adulation will give the guy a boost his rivals probably won’t enjoy.
But when push comes to shove, what are the chances Republican voters will nominate a former member of Obama’s team who doesn’t even want to describe himself as conservative? Strange things happen, but I’m hard pressed to imagine how anything this strange happens.
According to GOPolitico, Fox News was the first to cut away from Huntsman’s ‘big’ announcement today – half way through his speech. So, they’ll treat him with as much as respect during his campaign as they do the President.
President Barack Obama smiles as he looks at the remote cameras set up by the press pool photographers as he rides his bicycle followed by his daughter Malia in West Tisbury on Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts, on August 27