by John Vuotto
Widener University Political Science Major
Since the beginning of the primary process, almost every Republican Presidential candidate has had a large amount of media attention. Whether it was a gaffe or an emergence in the polls, every candidate has had their moment. Every candidate except for former Governor of Utah and ambassador to China, Jon Huntsman. Huntsman ran a campaign that didn’t tow the party line. He didn’t say things at the numerous debates to get applause. He stuck to his positions, whether they agreed with the GOP or not. Huntsman’s campaign never took off and caught fire with the American People.
Mitt Romney consistently leads in the polls and this proves that Huntsman’s problem wasn’t that he’s not an extreme conservative. Most Americans are not as polarized as the cable news media makes them out to be. It is increasingly likely that Mitt Romney will get the nomination. He has had problems shaking the image of a flip flopper and someone who will “say anything to get elected.” There are also questions about the personal lives and business dealings of the other candidates. With Huntsman there is no scandal or flip-flops. He has been consistent in his views and does not play to the political climate. Michael Smerconish, a nationally syndicated radio host from Philadelphia writes in the Philadelphia Inquirer “..admirably, he has resisted every temptation to put his finger to the wind before speaking. Had he done so, he surely would not have called President Obama a “good man,” nor would he have referred to his opponents as “all good people.'” Huntsman has stuck to his principles and remained honest. Independents will surely decide the 2012 election and Huntsman may have been the best opponent to defeat President Obama in the general election. He has views that stray from the GOP such as his belief in global warming, which Independents may agree with.
Something that has haunted Governor Romney in the primaries has been Romneycare. One of the biggest issues that Republican voters are angry about is the Affordable Care Act, a program the President said was modeled after Romney’s health care plan in Massachusetts. This will make it difficult for Romney to go head-to-head with President Obama on the issue of health care in the election. Huntsman has been the consistent conservative and Romney has not. He may have stood a better chance in November had he won the nomination.