Not that he is declaring his candidacy for 2012–just yet. (He will tell you that he was the youngest Republican candidate to run this cycle.) He is starting slower, with a debut next week of Huck PAC, a new political action committee to support other conservative candidates for federal office, including John McCain’s presidential campaign. “I want to continue to build the community,” he said Thursday night, in a conference call with thousands of supporters organized by Charisma, a magazine for evangelicals.
He’s also got a book in the works, which Time guesses will be used as a vehicle to air his grievances against prominent evangelicals for not genuflecting to identity politics and reflexively supporting the “Christian leader” in the race. (Vintage Huck sample quote: “Some really worship at the altar of electability.”) His and Mitt’s PACs have the same goal in the broadest sense and in the narrowest sense, i.e. building influence within the party, but trust Huck to use his to try to cultivate that peculiar populist blend of class resentment and religious resentment among Christian conservatives that didn’t quite metastasize for him this time. For the moment, though, he’s on board with the establishment.
Exit question: Everyone else as excited as I am for another protracted, bitter battle for the soul of social conservatism between Huck and Mitt? Jindalmania!