Jon Huntsman Recaps the GOP Primaries

Jon Huntsman continues to be one of the most interesting Republicans because of his honest opinions and willingness to criticize his own party. More on Huntsman here and here.

At any rate, he’s back in the news with a new interview at Huffington Post. The 2012 Republican primaries were addressed:

“Some [primary candidates] do it professionally. Some were entertainers,” he said of the Republican presidential field. “I looked down the debate stage, and half of them were probably on Fox contracts at one point in their career. You do that. You write some books. You go out and you sell some more. You get a radio gig or a TV gig out of it or something. And it’s like, you say to yourself, the barriers of entry to this game are pretty damn low.”

He chuckled a bit when reminded that a pizza conglomerate, in the person of Herman Cain, had led the Iowa caucus polls at one point. “It wasn’t a period where rational thinking or any kind of commitment to reality or truth or optimism necessarily prevailed,” Huntsman said. “It was how can you eviscerate the opposition.”

The interview shifted to the fiscal cliff negotiations:

“In my party, compromise cannot be seen as analogous to treason, which it has been recently,” he said. “You will have to have some compromise built in, and perhaps even on the marginal rates going up for a certain income category. My going-in position would be: Let’s work on phasing out all the deductions and loopholes. There is a trillion dollars there. Let’s see where that leaves us and move forward before you start willy-nilly raising taxes.”

On the GOP’s need for modernization and a possible 2016 run:

Tonally as well, Huntsman insisted his party has to evolve. The cultivation of knee-jerk conflict, he argued, has produced remarkably little fruit. For four years, the goal was to “thwart the opposition, stymie the opposition, obfuscate, be a flamethrower, go out there and destroy the system, and here we are,” he said. “We have seen the results of that mentality.”

Because his primary run embodied much of the approach he feels Republicans need to embrace, it stands to reason that Huntsman is contemplating another entry into electoral politics. He said upon entering the 2012 race that he had one more run in him. When asked if that still held true, he mustered little objection to the tea-leaf readers.

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4 Responses to Jon Huntsman Recaps the GOP Primaries

  1. Pingback: Jon Huntsman: “You saw where honesty got me in the primary” | Reason and Politics

  2. Hey no way! I just posted about Huntsman! Great minds think alike, I guess:

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