Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman was already a longshot to win the Republican race for president --and that was before his staff internally fell apart. Huntsman is, essentially, a moderate-sounding Republican candidate in an election season that won't reward moderation.
Now comes this Politico story about the campaign itself. Read between the lines and it's clear that nice-guy Huntsman isn't a match for hard-hitter John Weaver, his top campaign advisor. It's a tension that pervades the campaign. He wants to keep Weaver to do well in New Hampshire. But after that, where do you go? Polls show he won't win in conservative South Carolina and Florida isn't Huntsman country, even though his campaign is nominally based here. So, essentially, he's running for president of New Hampshire.
Huntsman also isn't an aggressive fundraiser. A family man, he wants to be a dad and a candidate -- a surefire way to lose a race. It's not too late to right the ship. But with 1 percent of the Republican vote in Florida's latest poll, Huntsman is running out of time.
A blistering internal feud in the Jon Huntsman presidential campaign is erupting into public view, with dueling camps trading charges and an exodus of campaign officials.
And now, a longtime family friend tells POLITICO that Huntsman’s wife and father fret that his presidential prospects have been threatened by the turmoil — and he places the blame on John Weaver, Huntsman’s controversial chief strategist.
Huntsman himself is so worried about the “drama,” as he calls it, that he’s taken a hands-on role in the restructuring, in hopes of rebounding from early missteps before it’s too late to improve his bottom-of-the-pack standing.
“I look forward to a future of less drama, more money and increasing contrasts with my opponents. We can win this thing,” Huntsman wrote in an email to the friend just hours after the resignation of his first campaign manager, Susie Wiles, became public July 21.