Monday, May 16, 2011


Cokie Roberts on NPR this morning, talking about Jon Huntsman:

He and Mitt Romney -- a fellow Mormon and reportedly a rival -- are going after the same people: those people who think that, in this time of economic trouble, a businessman who's had government experience as well is the best.... The White House does seem more worried about those two men, though, Huntsman and Romney, than others running, because I think they're worried that anybody who can convince voters that they can do a better job with the economy has an advantage if the economy stays bad.

So that's what Huntsman is now? "A businessman who's had government experience"?

Let's look at his bio:

After college, Huntsman worked as a White House staff assistant in the Reagan Administration. Under President George H.W. Bush, he was Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for trade development, commerce for East Asian and Pacific Affairs, as well as U.S. Ambassador to Singapore.... He served as Deputy United States Trade Representative in the George W. Bush Administration.

In addition to his public service, Huntsman served as an executive for the Huntsman Corporation, the Huntsman Cancer Foundation, and CEO of Huntsman Family Holdings Company. Other organizations he has served include the Utah Opera, Envision Utah, the Coalition for Utah's Future, and KSL-TV's Family Now campaign.

In November 2004, Huntsman was elected Governor of Utah.... He was re-elected in November 2008....

President Barack Obama nominated Jon Huntsman to serve as the United States Ambassador to China on May 16, 2009....

So, apart from a few years working at his billionaire daddy's companies, and working for a few charities, the guy has spent most of his adult life sucking on the government teat. But he's a Republican and he did punch his ticket in the corporate world, so that automatically adds up to being "a businessman who's had government experience" and who therefore, by definition, "can do a better job with the economy," because every Republican who's ever sat in on a board meeting is, by definition, a successful capitalist and job creator and not an icky "New Class" socialist liberal.

And while I imagine it's probably true that the White House fears Romney and Huntsman more than most other GOP candidates, I'm sure it's because Team Obama knows that, in a general election, swing voters won't regard Huntsman and Romney as utterly crazy. If it were because they're ex-businessman, the Obamaites would be terrified of Donald Trump, no?


In case you've forgotten, back when he was a wingnut hero seeking to vanquish a Democrat, even Arnold Schwarzenegger was sold to the public as a successful entrepreneur.

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