Huntsman: Politics isn’t really a “humanitarian cause”

posted at 11:00 am on January 11, 2012 by Jazz Shaw

One recurring theme which has kept cropping up during discussions of second tier candidates this year is money. How much do you have, how much do you need, where are you going to get it? Super PAC funds are nice, but you really have no control over the message in terms of the ads they run and you can’t touch those funds for the day to day infrastructure costs of a national campaign. In the case of Jon Huntsman, fresh off a third place, “ticket to ride” finish in New Hampshire, his family fortune, including the wealth of his billionaire father, keeps being mentioned.

Would his Granite State showing be impressive enough to suddenly have his father open up the cash taps into his Super PAC? Will the candidate dip into his own pockets to finance his push in South Carolina? (And, possibly, Florida?) During his last interview before New Hampshire voting took place, it didn’t sound like it.

When questioned on the subject by CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley, Huntsman noted that he didn’t usually consider politics a worthy cause for donation – but he stopped short of totally ruling out the possibility.

“If you finish in the single digits do you go into your personal wealth and carry the campaign into South Carolina and beyond?” Pelley asked Huntsman in an interview for the Evening News. (Watch more of the interview on CBS at 6:30 p.m. ET.)

“We’re a humanitarian family. You know, we typically give to humanitarian causes. And I’ve always argued that politics doesn’t qualify necessarily as a humanitarian cause,” Huntsman laughed in response.

It’s an interesting and even somewhat clever response. In one shot he gets to point out that he’s a generous, moral soul who leans toward charitable donations, while showing a little disdain for campaign finance infighting, but dodges any commitment to spending his own cash. He certainly has some money to spend, as does his family. But not many people are so wealthy that they can just start flushing away their savings at ten or twenty million dollars a pop with little prospect of a return on investment.

I’m not sure how many other options Huntsman has, though. It seems very unlikely that a third place finish on Tuesday, capturing less than half of the winner’s total, will inspire the confidence required for a flood of fresh independent donations to appear. And his prospects in South Carolina look, if anything, even worse than they did yesterday with less time to build up his ground game. While I’m generally terrible at predictions, I have the feeling that anything less than second place in this next primary will end up pushing Huntsman out of the race entirely. And even second place looks like a huge mountain for Huntsman to climb.


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First (just to p!ss off some whiners.)

katy the mean old lady on January 11, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Idiot

trapeze on January 11, 2012 at 11:06 AM

This clown should drop out along with Perry and Newt.

Ruiner on January 11, 2012 at 11:06 AM

Jon, you fought valiantly.

But, it’s over. Time to head back to Utah, or Beijing, and endorse them man you know should be our next POTUS… Ron Paul.

JohnGalt23 on January 11, 2012 at 11:08 AM

I have the feeling that anything less than second place in this next primary will end up pushing Huntsman out of the race entirely. And even second place looks like a huge mountain for Huntsman to climb.

I don’t think that’s right. I don’t think Huntsman expects to place 2nd in SC (mostly because he’s unable to get there). Florida would be up next, and I assume he expects to make a push there. After that there are a couple of states he should expect to push hard for (Nevada, Maine). But my guess is that he’ll hang around at least until the primaries after that (Colorado, Minnesota (Missouri)).

If he doesn’t start picking up serious traction, he’ll likely be out before “Super Tuesday” March 6.

Abby Adams on January 11, 2012 at 11:09 AM

Meet the Plastics.

/

Key West Reader on January 11, 2012 at 11:10 AM

Jon Huntsman Sr. (a great man) has said he wants to “die broke”.

Jr. may the vessel to make his fathers dreams come true.

aquaviva on January 11, 2012 at 11:10 AM

… politics doesn’t qualify necessarily as a humanitarian cause

Does anyone truly disagree with this?

Dante on January 11, 2012 at 11:11 AM

“If you finish in the single digits do you go into your personal wealth and carry the campaign into South Carolina and beyond?” Pelley asked Huntsman in an interview for the Evening News. (Watch more of the interview on CBS at 6:30 p.m. ET.)

“We’re a humanitarian family. You know, we typically give to humanitarian causes. And I’ve always argued that politics doesn’t qualify necessarily as a humanitarian cause,” Huntsman laughed in response.

Well, he didn’t finish in the single digits, so he’s technically not going against his response to the specific question asked, but with regard to the larger issue I suspect at some point he will drop out if he keeps placing third or worse.

McDuck on January 11, 2012 at 11:12 AM

While I’m generally terrible at predictions, I have the feeling that anything less than second place in this next primary will end up pushing Huntsman out of the race entirely. And even second place looks like a huge mountain for Huntsman to climb.

I doubt Huntsman’s going to get third place in South Carolina, but were that to happen, he would probably get a second look.

I suspect that his strategy is to stay in until Super Tuesday, no matter what happens. He has some limited hopes of winning the nomination. Quite limited.

But it would help him in 2016, or getting a cabinet post in a Romney administration.

Mister Mets on January 11, 2012 at 11:12 AM

Jon, you fought valiantly.

But, it’s over. Time to head back to Utah, or Beijing, and endorse them man you know should be our next POTUS… Ron Paul.

JohnGalt23 on January 11, 2012 at 11:08 AM

I seriously doubt he’ll endorse Paul. A Romney endorsement is far more likely.

McDuck on January 11, 2012 at 11:13 AM

It’s an interesting and even somewhat clever response. In one shot he gets to point out that he’s a generous, moral soul who leans toward charitable donations, while showing a little disdain for campaign finance infighting, but dodges any commitment to spending his own cash.

I hardly think it clever to assert that politics is a public service that’s only worthy of pursuit using other people’s money.

Dusty on January 11, 2012 at 11:13 AM

Huntsman is simply waiting for official permission from obama to drop out – until such time as obama no longer requires Huntsman’s services, the Huntsman family is obligated to continue funding Jon’s campaign.

Pork-Chop on January 11, 2012 at 11:16 AM

The fact that we are headed into the third race and I’ve watched the debates yet still have no idea about where this guy stands, other than he isn’t above working as a diplomat for the jug-eared idiot, is probably a key reason why his campaign is a failure.

Huntsman was too good to campaign in Iowa and thought he could woo voters in Romney’s backyard. He speaks in vague generalities and fails to inspire or excite voters in a field not exactly known for its charisma. It is time for him to fold his tent and go home.

Happy Nomad on January 11, 2012 at 11:16 AM

He is a nice man, and he has a nice family.
He should be with them.
The rich,when they don’t earn the money…obviously have time to waste.

KOOLAID2 on January 11, 2012 at 11:18 AM

When questioned on the subject by CBS Evening News anchor Scott Pelley, Huntsman noted that he didn’t usually consider politics a worthy cause for donation – but he stopped short of totally ruling out the possibility.

What a crock.
The trust fund baby (like his fellow traveler Mittens) wants to buy political office.
How does that make him different from Dems and their benefactors?
The Huntsmans have Billion$ – they can buy the seat.
Aint rich boy politics grand!
Mittens v. Huntsman = cat fight, cat fight!

~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on January 11, 2012 at 11:18 AM

I seriously doubt he’ll endorse Paul. A Romney endorsement is far more likely.

McDuck on January 11, 2012 at 11:13 AM

Yup, with an eye toward being selected for the VP slot.

UltimateBob on January 11, 2012 at 11:19 AM

Idiot

trapeze on January 11, 2012

Snappy rejoinder. /sarc
How about some injection of intellect?
Never Mind

~(Ä)~

Karl Magnus on January 11, 2012 at 11:20 AM

katy the mean old lady on January 11, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Nice! I pulled off a trifecta yesterday. Yes Bishop was watching. Am I the only one who thinks had Huntsman gone with just one first name he would have done better. It got so confusing.

Bmore on January 11, 2012 at 11:20 AM

I hardly think it clever to assert that politics is a public service that’s only worthy of pursuit using other people’s money.

Dusty on January 11, 2012 at 11:13 AM

Public servants don’t have the millions to even consider contributing to their own campaigns. It somewhat demeans public servants to lump the political class running for elective office into the category of public service. Political campaigning is not a public service no matter whose money is used.

Happy Nomad on January 11, 2012 at 11:21 AM

I don’t like Huntsman, but I will concede that his wife is yummy.

BuckeyeSam on January 11, 2012 at 11:21 AM

Yup, with an eye toward being selected for the VP slot.

UltimateBob on January 11, 2012 at 11:19 AM

Huntsman would be a perfect VP pick… for anyone BUT Romney.

Abby Adams on January 11, 2012 at 11:23 AM

Nice! I pulled off a trifecta yesterday. Yes Bishop was watching. Am I the only one who thinks had Huntsman gone with just one first name he would have done better. It got so confusing.

Bmore on January 11, 2012 at 11:20 AM

Saw that. Heard you won a brand new BMW. Don’t get excited. The neighbors said it is already parked in Bishop’s driveway.

katy the mean old lady on January 11, 2012 at 11:24 AM

The fact that we are headed into the third race and I’ve watched the debates yet still have no idea about where this guy stands…..

Happy Nomad on January 11, 2012 at 11:16 AM

I feel pretty much the same way about Romney.

UltimateBob on January 11, 2012 at 11:24 AM

Does anyone truly disagree with this?

[Dante on January 11, 2012 at 11:11 AM]

You’d think Jon Huntsman would, considering he says he’ll always put his country first.

Dusty on January 11, 2012 at 11:24 AM

If he doesn’t start picking up serious traction, he’ll likely be out before “Super Tuesday” March 6.

Abby Adams on January 11, 2012 at 11:09 AM

Don’t lose heart. What happens if you defect?

katy the mean old lady on January 11, 2012 at 11:28 AM

This guy’s coming off a little flaky…

MeatHeadinCA on January 11, 2012 at 11:30 AM

It’s an interesting and even somewhat clever response.

How does rank hypocricy and specious moralizing qualify as interesting and clever. I’m so tired of this I’m so above politics crap. Coming from Huntsman, this is like the Whore of Babylon saying that she never pays for sex. Politics is the ultimate humanitarian cause. Politics may be messy, dirty, inefficient, and frustrating, but it is the way we assert conscience, will, and belief in a free society. Politics is the ultimate expression of liberty. Just look at the countries that don’t have politics – Commie rat traps, Third World sh*t holes, and theocratic nightmares. I suggest to anyone who gets tapped by the Huntsman campaign for a donation say thank-you, but I’m giving to the Red Cross.

Mr. Arkadin on January 11, 2012 at 11:30 AM

It somewhat demeans public servants to lump the political class running for elective office into the category of public service.

[Happy Nomad on January 11, 2012 at 11:21 AM]

Then tell Jon Huntsman to quit doing it.

And while we’re on the subject, I’ll return to thinking public service an admirable quality when compensation for the work is the same as for work in the private sector. Thanks.

Dusty on January 11, 2012 at 11:31 AM

Huntsman will stick around in this race as long as his boss, Emperor Hussein I, tells him to get out, and stops back channeling funds.

I am still convinced that Huntsman is a trojan horse candidate and will go 3rd party in the general. He’s probably not going to do double digits in ANY of the other primaries. There is no reason for him to stay in other than that he’s doing Obama’s bidding as he has absolutely no chance to win and is running to the left of the most mushy candidate in our field.

wildcat72 on January 11, 2012 at 11:35 AM

I just can’t wait until he gets out so I can go to the Huffpo and read 10,000 comments that all say “the only sane one is gone.”

Roymunson on January 11, 2012 at 11:36 AM

What is sad about Huntsman is that he’d probably make a really good conservative president, but for his fatal (conceited) flaw that caused him to go to work for Obama. Probably the most idiotic move in his career.

theblackcommenter on January 11, 2012 at 11:39 AM

The American system of government lacks any room for His Irrelevancy.

jangle12 on January 11, 2012 at 11:40 AM

I see the Huntsman haters are up and at it. Glad you guys got some sleep after last night.

I must say, the trolling is powerful within you guys. Rick Perry signs forced-vaccinations and in-state tuition for illegals, yet he’s not a “RINO” because he’s a creationist believer, smh…

Also, to the people telling Huntsman to drop out, he got 17% in NH, and 1% in Iowa, while Perry got 10% in Iowa, and 1% in NH.

Perry and Newt sounding like leftist radicals attacking Bain Capital are the ones who should go.

Aizen on January 11, 2012 at 11:40 AM

If you’re going to use a picture under the headline, please use one of the brunette daughter. Thanks.

hamnj7 on January 11, 2012 at 11:40 AM

Don’t lose heart. What happens if you defect?

katy the mean old lady on January 11, 2012 at 11:28 AM

Oh, I’m not defecting. But I am trying to be a realist. He’s got my support until the moment he drops out (if it happens). Then One day or so of mopping about “what could have been” and then on to my next choice (as unsatisfactory as that may be).

Abby Adams on January 11, 2012 at 11:40 AM

Jon Huntsman Sr. (a great man) has said he wants to “die broke”.

Jr. may the vessel to make his fathers dreams come true.

aquaviva on January 11, 2012 at 11:10 AM

Jon Huntsman Sr. is indeed a great man. If all billionares were like him, the world would be a better place.

Junior needs to get his candy-ass out of town. He is embarrassing his dad.

Jailbreak on January 11, 2012 at 11:45 AM

MSNBC’s ‘Morning Joe’ dream candidate for the Pubbie ticket. Check out Gateway Pundit today: 51% of Huntsman voters in NH are satisfied with Obama as president; 70% of Huntsman voters describe themselves as ‘moderate’ or ‘liberal’. Huntsman is pure poison for saner voters!

Bob in VA on January 11, 2012 at 11:51 AM

This clown reminds me of the SOB that sold me my Chevy Blazer last year that has been in the shop 4 times already.

KBird on January 11, 2012 at 11:52 AM

Jon Huntsman Sr. is indeed a great man. If all billionares were like him, the world would be a better place.

Junior needs to get his candy-ass out of town. He is embarrassing his dad.

Jailbreak on January 11, 2012 at 11:45 AM

Why should we wish for billionaires to die broke?

What someone earns belongs to them. If you didn’t earn it, it isn’t yours. If it isn’t yours you have no say in what is done with it.

That mentality that somehow the “rich” are somehow obligated to pay a greater percentage than you “for the common good” is the same one the “occupy” hippies have. It has no place in conservatism.

Hint: the poorest American is rich in most other countries in the world. What if those people got to dictate how much of what you make YOU get to keep?

wildcat72 on January 11, 2012 at 11:54 AM

First (just to p!ss off some whiners.)

katy the mean old lady on January 11, 2012 at 11:04 AM

Heh, way to put these whipper snappers in their place. :-)

Abby Adams on January 11, 2012 at 11:40 AM

May I say that you are one of the most loyal, good natured, and polite supporters of Governor Huntsman I’ve come across.

For your sake I hope he does experience a surge in the polls, though at this point I’m not sure it would be enough to overtake Governor Romney.

Flora Duh on January 11, 2012 at 11:58 AM

katy the mean old lady on January 11, 2012 at 11:24 AM

Lol. My first official comment here at HA was logically in homage the the master of firsts! I got slammed for it. So I thought, quick better recover and make a decent comment. Its the day I met my first friend here at HA. I screen capped the entire exchange and have it hanging on my wall of shame. Give it a look if you have a moment. http://hotair.com/archives/2011/12/08/ethanol-the-politicians-best-friend/

Bmore on January 11, 2012 at 12:17 PM

If Obamney taps Huntsman for VP, I’m staying home.

Key West Reader on January 11, 2012 at 12:25 PM

Huntsman: Politics isn’t really a “humanitarianliating cause”

There, that’s more like it.

Key West Reader on January 11, 2012 at 12:31 PM

Huntsman was too good to campaign in Iowa and thought he could woo voters in Romney’s backyard. He speaks in vague generalities and fails to inspire or excite voters in a field not exactly known for its charisma. It is time for him to fold his tent and go home.

Happy Nomad on January 11, 2012 at 11:16 AM

..being a fan of Ralph Huntsman is like eating a can of Crisco.

The War Planner on January 11, 2012 at 12:36 PM

Huntsman: Politics isn’t really a “humanitarian cause”

If only the Founding Fathers could respond personally to that quote.

listens2glenn on January 11, 2012 at 12:43 PM

While patriotic Americans rose-up and literally took to the streets by the millions in 2009 & 2010 and at town halls, the 912 protest, and the 2010 mid-terms, where was Huntsmann? Was he working with them, supporting them, speaking out against Obama? Oh, that’s right, he was working for the enemy. Not for the US, not for America, but supporting the administration of an enemy of America. He was brushing up on his Mandarin on the Beijing Chicom cocktail party circuit. Now he wants to lead the Americans he abandoned? Huntsmann is full of hot heir.

Tripwhipper on January 11, 2012 at 12:55 PM

Tripwhipper on January 11, 2012 at 12:55 PM

Take your meds. You are experiencing dementia. “Working for the enemy?” Good lord…

Abby Adams on January 11, 2012 at 12:59 PM

“And I’ve always argued that politics doesn’t qualify necessarily as a humanitarian cause,”

Ambassador to China, right?

apostic on January 11, 2012 at 1:12 PM

Take your meds. You are experiencing dementia. “Working for the enemy?” Good lord…

Obama is not an Anti-American, not an enemy of the US? Sounds like he has your vote.

Tripwhipper on January 11, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Tripwhipper on January 11, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Smokin’ donkey balls you’re dumb.

Abby Adams on January 11, 2012 at 2:33 PM

Dante on January 11, 2012 at 11:11 AM

Seriously. File this article under “No Shit Sherlock.”

gyrmnix on January 11, 2012 at 3:00 PM

Smokin’ donkey balls you’re dumb.

Abby Adams on January 11, 2012 at 2:33 PM

Huntsmann would make a viable VP for Obama to replace Biden,
but that’s about it.

Tripwhipper on January 11, 2012 at 3:15 PM

A little drama in Arizona’s presidential preference election. Huntsman is off the ballot and the Sec. of State is the Co-chair of Romney’s campaign?

http://www.westernfreepress.com/2012/01/11/why-was-jon-huntsman-disqualified-from-arizona%E2%80%99s-ballot/

I think that is interesting…

ConservativeLaw on January 11, 2012 at 5:08 PM

As the Red chinese say “yuck foo”.

borntoraisehogs on January 11, 2012 at 7:33 PM