South Carolina: Jon Huntsman in a tight race with…

posted at 1:20 pm on January 10, 2012 by Jazz Shaw

They may be talking about a possible, last minute Huntsman surge up in New Hampshire, but it would appear that his fortunes may not be on the rise in South Carolina. It would be understandable for the former Ambassador to China to struggle when competing against noted conservative candidates such as Santorum in this race, but he’s apparently also losing to… Stephen Colbert, who isn’t even on the ballot.

Stephen Colbert wanted to sponsor the South Carolina Republican primary. He wanted his name on the ballot and he wanted a referendum about whether corporations are people or only people are people. He was rebuffed in his efforts but our team at PPP decided if he couldn’t get all that stuff on the actual ballot, we could at least poll it for him. Here’s what we found:

-5% of primary voters would pick Colbert. He runs behind Mitt Romney’s 27%, Newt Gingrich’s 23%, Rick Santorum’s 18%, Ron Paul’s 8%, and Rick Perry’s 7%. But’s he beating out Jon Huntsman’s 4% and Buddy Roemer’s 1%.

Even if Huntsman finishes second in New Hampshire tonight it doesn’t speak well for his prospects down the line that he’s running behind Stephen Colbert.

Colbert actually did try to run for president in 2008, but only in his home state. This time the story was a bit more convoluted. The comedian wasn’t trying to get on the ballot as a candidate. He wanted his name on the ballot, offering the cash strapped state GOP a half million dollars to help pay for the cost of the election if they would rename the event, “The Colbert Super PAC South Carolina Republican Primary.” And for a while it almost looked like it might happen, except he also wanted a referendum question added to the ballot, asking voters if they thought corporations were people, or if only people were people.

The deal fell apart, but as PPP indicates, he may have highlighted a warning sign for Mitt Romney down there.

While Colbert’s prospects for actually winning in South Carolina may have been limited, he would have found support on his proposed referendum. Just 33% of likely voters think that ‘corporations are people’ compared to 67% who think that ‘only people are people.’ Supporters of every Republican candidate believe that ‘only people are people,’ even 66% of Mitt Romney’s whose comments inspired this debate in the first place.

Fortunately, with Colbert off the ballot, Huntsman may find room to expand his appeal and move into the high single digits by next week.


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The same South Carolina that insulted Nikki Haley’s sacred honor?
Huntsman’s above winning such states.

abobo on January 10, 2012 at 1:24 PM

At some point, you just have to give it up and stop taking peoples money. C’mon.

FlaMurph on January 10, 2012 at 1:24 PM

Just wait.

Huntsman’s strong finish in NH will give him a much-needed boost in SC!

Come on, GOP! Don’t settle for another McCain just yet!

Aizen on January 10, 2012 at 1:25 PM

OMG can’t take cOlbert.

blatantblue on January 10, 2012 at 1:26 PM

Corporations aren’t people people, obviously. They are people for purposes of conducting business. Don’t they teach people about legal fictions anymore? Very stupid poll.

andy85719 on January 10, 2012 at 1:27 PM

I’m switching my support to Todd Huntsman because it’s his turn to be flavor of the month and he hasn’t been thoroughly trashed by the MSM yet.

I reserve the right to change my mind should Buddy Roehmer surge in the polls.

JPeterman on January 10, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Why do people here intentionally mess up Huntsman’s first name? It’s not like some idiot in the media called him by a wrong name like they did to “Herb” Cain, right?

Aizen on January 10, 2012 at 1:31 PM

It just isn’t fair that all the other candidates get to be front runner for a week, but not Stephen Huntsman.

pedestrian on January 10, 2012 at 1:32 PM

And by front-runner, I mean come in second to Romney.

pedestrian on January 10, 2012 at 1:34 PM

Just wait.

Huntsman’s strong finish in NH will give him a much-needed boost in SC!

Come on, GOP! Don’t settle for another McCain just yet!

Aizen on January 10, 2012 at 1:25 PM

Hope for a Santy bounce huh?
They don’t want to settle for another Bob Dole either.

KOOLAID2 on January 10, 2012 at 1:35 PM

Not sure who is more annoying, Stephen Colbert or John Huntsman.

Roymunson on January 10, 2012 at 1:35 PM

Sorry, Huntsman is an unknown and liberal enough to be cozy with Obama. And once you get that rabid socialist taint on you, there is no going back to associating with decent people again.

I will vote for him if he wins the nomination but I don’t think there is much danger of that. Huntsman has decided to concentrate on introducing himself to a bunch of cranky New Englanders who view their place in the primaries as an entitlement. He’s also come off as arrogant with his attack on Iowans. That and the Obama connection is an awful lot to overcome in a real state with a real primary that matters just 10 days from now.

Happy Nomad on January 10, 2012 at 1:38 PM

With Colbert not on the ticket in SC, the Chinaman will still finish a distant last. If Romney wins SC, I will be surprised. It will pretty much be over if he wins a conservative state like SC.

they lie on January 10, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Why do people here intentionally mess up Huntsman’s first name? It’s not like some idiot in the media called him by a wrong name like they did to “Herb” Cain, right?

Aizen on January 10, 2012 at 1:31 PM

Huntsman’s own campaign misspelled his first name as JoHn, not Jon.–when he declared his run for the WH. So nobody uses his first name, a fun little HA tic.

herm2416 on January 10, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Hope for a Santy bounce huh?
They don’t want to settle for another Bob Dole either.

KOOLAID2 on January 10, 2012 at 1:35 PM

Santorum’s worse than Huntsman, though.

Santorum supported Medicare Part D, No Child Left Behind, voted against Right to Work legislation, and voted to increase the debt-ceiling like 4 times. Huntsman’s not perfect, either, but he’s a lot closer to Reagan’s Jacksonian foreign policy as opposed to Santorum’s Bush/Obama foreign policy.

Aizen on January 10, 2012 at 1:39 PM

If Huntsman’s still in the race tomorrow, he’d be better served leap frogging South Carolina like Perry did to New Hampshire and move on to Florida.

If Mr. Huntsman is still in the race, Florida is his final shot.

If the Ricks can’t place at least third in South Carolina, they may bow out before Huntsman.

I certainly hope the whole cadre of them can stick it out until Florida.

King of the Ring, GOP style.

Logus on January 10, 2012 at 1:43 PM

All the GOP Candidates are “government solutions” boys.

…..so just pick one you like for now and see what happens.

I have to admit the Gingrich / Perry assaults on capitalism are just insane. Just makes Mittens look good.

I just hope Mitty REALLY REALLY FIGHTS Obama and doesn’t just lay down like McCain did in 2008.

…..AND as a bonus we’ll have Progressive Lite with Romney or Progressive Marxist Obama to chose from.

PappyD61 on January 10, 2012 at 1:43 PM

With Colbert not on the ticket in SC, the Chinaman will still finish a distant last. If Romney wins SC, I will be surprised. It will pretty much be over if he wins a conservative state like SC.

they lie on January 10, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Wow. No need for the racism, bro.

Huntsman’s own campaign misspelled his first name as JoHn, not Jon.–when he declared his run for the WH. So nobody uses his first name, a fun little HA tic.

herm2416 on January 10, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Oh, thanks for the info.

Aizen on January 10, 2012 at 1:45 PM

they lie on January 10, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Romney will win South Carolina and I think it won’t be particularly close.

joana on January 10, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Rush has turned on Newt. Compares Newt to Occupiers and repeatedly mention Fannie money. Newt will disintegrate in SC.

andy85719 on January 10, 2012 at 1:49 PM

A Massachusetts libtard has plenty of nerve coming down to South Carolina and trying to turn the primary into an exhibition of ignorance.

Turn this around: if the people of Massachusetts were asked if the second amendment means anyone may own a gun and the government can’t say a thing about it, or does it mean the government can say something like “the gun can only be owned if it has the firing pin removed”, would they poll in favor of the Constitution or not?

How about the Tenth amendment: would they even be willing to recognize it as a part of the Constitution at all?

MTF on January 10, 2012 at 1:52 PM

Rush Limbaugh on what Romey’s comeback to Newt should be: “I have fired people, but I never fired a wife on her deathbed”

andy85719 on January 10, 2012 at 1:53 PM

2nd look at Eric Huntsman?

Brian on January 10, 2012 at 1:58 PM

Huntsman didn’t even get on the ballot in Illinois and Arizona.

Incidentally Arizona is one of the easiest states to get on the ballot, it’s not even necessary to gather signatures.

Huntsman isn’t running a serious presidential campaign any more. Just going through the motions. He’ll get out of the race tonight.

joana on January 10, 2012 at 1:59 PM

CATO Institute grades

Romney: C
Huntsman: B

This is for their entire governorship respectively.

Hunstman looks like a slick car salesman. Indeed. But he governed as a pretty solid conservative while governor of Utah. He also served in the Reagan administration. He’s been consistently pro-life and pro-gun.

For the like of me I don’t get how on HotAir he is the RINOiest of RINOs yet Romney is a bona fide conservative.

Is serving as Ambassador under Obama really worse than RomneyCare and the mile long list of flip flops? Is a governor of Utah which reliably votes 55-60% Republican really more liberal than the governor of Massachusetts?

Come on people.

angryed on January 10, 2012 at 1:59 PM

CATO Institute grades

Romney: C
Huntsman: B

This is for their entire governorship respectively.

angryed on January 10, 2012 at 1:59 PM

First i will take a C in MA, then a B in Utah, their is really no reason at all not to be a AAA in the most (or almost) republican state in the nation,

Oh and how did Romney get a C, according to you Romney is worse then Obama, so why didn’t he get an F

OrthodoxJew on January 10, 2012 at 2:10 PM

With Colbert not on the ticket in SC, the Chinaman will still finish a distant last. If Romney wins SC, I will be surprised. It will pretty much be over if he wins a conservative state like SC.

they lie on January 10, 2012 at 1:38 PM
Wow. No need for the racism, bro.

I did not realize the word “chinaman” was considered an offensive term in modern dictionairies. I equated it with the term “Frenchman”, “Irishman” “Englishman”. I was referring to Huntsman’s use of speaking chinese in Sat. night’s debate in a sarcastic manner and his constant reminders of his being an Ambassador to China .

Thanks for educating me. I am embarassed for not realizing that I was using a term that may be offensive.

My apologies to any one who was offended.

they lie on January 10, 2012 at 2:16 PM

Rush has turned on Newt. Compares Newt to Occupiers and repeatedly mention Fannie money. Newt will disintegrate in SC.

andy85719 on January 10, 2012 at 1:49 PM

When did speaking the truth mean that you’ve turned on a candidate? I’d characterize it as Newt having another meltdown and attacking capitalism in the very same terms used by the folks sleeping with the rats in DC’s Freedom Plaza. Newt does have a connection with Freddie (not Fannie) that is questionable. And, I think that Newt’s decision to allow these PAC to run the attack ads against Romney is over-the-top spite because he thought himself a shoo-in the few weeks he was polling well in Iowa. Make no mistake all of the above is nothing but a temper tantrum by a sore loser and the sooner he is defeated the better for us all.

Happy Nomad on January 10, 2012 at 2:20 PM

CATO Institute grades

angryed on January 10, 2012 at 1:59 PM

Given the source, I’m not surprised that the more “progressive” candidate gets the better grade. Romney is no conservative but CATO’s agenda is on the more radical side of the left center.

Happy Nomad on January 10, 2012 at 2:23 PM

First i will take a C in MA, then a B in Utah, their is really no reason at all not to be a AAA in the most (or almost) republican state in the nation,

OrthodoxJew on January 10, 2012 at 2:10 PM

CATO would probably give Obama a D+ or C-.

They don’t grade on a curve based on election results. A C in MA is a C in Utah. Hunstman was the more fiscally conservative of the two.

angryed on January 10, 2012 at 2:25 PM

CATO’s agenda is on the more radical side of the left center.

Happy Nomad on January 10, 2012 at 2:23 PM

Say what now?

angryed on January 10, 2012 at 2:25 PM

CATO Institute grades

Romney: C
Huntsman: B

This is for their entire governorship respectively.

Hunstman looks like a slick car salesman. Indeed. But he governed as a pretty solid conservative while governor of Utah. He also served in the Reagan administration. He’s been consistently pro-life and pro-gun.

For the like of me I don’t get how on HotAir he is the RINOiest of RINOs yet Romney is a bona fide conservative.

Is serving as Ambassador under Obama really worse than RomneyCare and the mile long list of flip flops? Is a governor of Utah which reliably votes 55-60% Republican really more liberal than the governor of Massachusetts?

Come on people.

angryed on January 10, 2012 at 1:59 PM

Amen.

Everyone knows Mitt isn’t a “bona fide” conservative, yet he’s still the front-runner because people assume he’s the most electable (from the comments I’ve read on HotAir over the last several months.)

I say, if everyone wrongfully believes Huntsman’s a RINO, he’s still better than Mitt, anyway.

The reason Huntsman got “B” in Utah because he had to deal with liberals in the legislator.

Aizen on January 10, 2012 at 2:26 PM

Well that does it, he has to appear on Colbert’s show tonight….and say goodbye to the campaign.

jake49 on January 10, 2012 at 2:31 PM

Say what now?

angryed on January 10, 2012 at 2:25 PM

When you look at a preponderance of their positions they are nuttier than a Ron Paul rally. They have somewhat reasonable ideas mixed in with the same lunacy that makes Pual unfit for office (I want a government that will fight to maintain our way of life not insist that we get out of the way and let our enemies run roughshod over our economy and national security by indirect means). The so-called conservatives they feature are really more the non-interventionist types who argue against war, not for moral reasons but the disruption it causes in the profits of global corporations.

Happy Nomad on January 10, 2012 at 2:31 PM

CATO would probably give Obama a D+ or C-.

They don’t grade on a curve based on election results. A C in MA is a C in Utah. Hunstman was the more fiscally conservative of the two.

angryed on January 10, 2012 at 2:25 PM

Again if a republican in Utah can not get a AAA for fiscal conservative, i trust him less then a governor of MA who gets a C

As you know if we win Utah, we will win MA no? /s

OrthodoxJew on January 10, 2012 at 2:32 PM

Corporations aren’t people people, obviously. They are people for purposes of conducting business. Don’t they teach people about legal fictions anymore? Very stupid poll.

andy85719 on January 10, 2012 at 1:27 PM

Legal fictions? They barely teach people how to READ anymore.

Shump on January 10, 2012 at 2:34 PM

Aizen on January 10, 2012 at 2:26 PM

The primaries ultimately come down to building a coalition. I really like Rick Santorum but he is too socially conservative to attract the independent vote (also the reason Ron Paul’s supporters were attacking he and his family last night). Of the candidates out there right now, Romney is perhaps the best one to build a coalition. That is not to say that he is the best candidate for America but there are far too many stupid people who will not vote for a social conservative under any circumstance.

Happy Nomad on January 10, 2012 at 2:36 PM

But, I thought going on Colbert’s show and pandering to that crowd was supposed to give him a “bump”?! Seems Colbert bumped him alright.

Logus on January 10, 2012 at 2:43 PM

How stupid does Hussein obama think GOP primary voters are?

Go ahead (Grand Old Party) picks someone like this ‘so-called’ sane Republican?

I double dog dare your ass!!

try again later on January 10, 2012 at 2:47 PM

Stephen Colbert wanted to sponsor the South Carolina Republican primary. He wanted his name on the ballot and he wanted a referendum about whether corporations are people or only people are people. He was rebuffed in his efforts but our team at PPP decided if he couldn’t get all that stuff on the actual ballot, we could at least poll it for him.

I’m so glad that PPP is wrestling with the serious issues of our time, and protecting their credibility as a professional polling firm.

tom on January 10, 2012 at 3:55 PM

My prediction: Huntsman wins NH thanks to his relentless trashing of voters in Iowa whose support he would need in a general election, then he goes away and we can all pretend he was just a bad dream.

Mr. Prodigy on January 10, 2012 at 4:05 PM

Hey people,

Don’t apologize for racist remarks. Go watch “Smokey And The Bandit” then come back and write again, k?

ProudPalinFan on January 10, 2012 at 4:06 PM

Dude Chinaman is not the preferred nomenclature, Asian American Please.
We’re not talking about the guy who built the railroad here.

Buttercup on January 10, 2012 at 5:01 PM

Mr Huntsman, may I call you Bert?
Bert, please get out of the way. All you have managed to do so far is irritate real conservatives.
Thank you.
Goodbye.

rightoption on January 10, 2012 at 5:02 PM

Only people are people. Fine.

And once a group of like minded people band together in an enterprise clearly they lose all free speech rights, and many other rights? Only when acting by yourself with no help do you deserve any rights at all… or something like that.. I guess?

Can someone explain to be why silencing people is a good thing again?

The best counter to bad/stupid talk is more talk a totalitarian regime who will silence all dissent.

When did this statement change? I must have missed it.

gekkobear on January 10, 2012 at 6:45 PM