Obama jokes about 2012 race
January 19th, 2011
04:02 PM ET
4 years ago

Obama jokes about 2012 race

(CNN) - President Barack Obama weighed into the 2012 race Wednesday, albeit jokingly.

At a White House press availability with Chinese President Hu Jintao, Obama downplayed the possibility of Jon Huntsman, his ambassador to China, challenging him in the next presidential election.

When asked what he thought of the speculation, Obama joked, "I'm sure the fact that him having worked so well with me will be a great asset in any Republican primary."

He praised the former Utah Republican governor for doing an "outstanding job" in the position for the past two years, and said Huntsman would be successful in whatever he chooses to do next.

"The fact that he comes from a different party, I think, is a strength, not a weakness, because it indicates the degree to which both he and I believe the partisanship ends at the water's edge, and that we work together to advocate on behalf of our country," Obama said.

Presidential speculation surrounded Huntsman until he assumed the ambassadorship, a role he agreed to hold for two years. In an interview with Newsweek earlier in January, Huntsman declined to rule out a possible run for the Republican nomination in 2012.


Filed under: 2012 • Jon Huntsman • President Obama
soundoff (7 Responses)
  1. Protect and Defend Freedom of Speech in the USA

    He praised the former Utah Republican governor for doing an "outstanding job" in the position for the past two years, and said Huntsman would be successful in whatever he chooses to do next.
    =================================================================================================
    Well, if Huntsman runs for President in 2012 then I finally agree with something Obama says! Never thought I'd see the day...

    January 19, 2011 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  2. GOP = Greed Over People

    "I'm sure the fact that him having worked so well with me will be a great asset in any Republican primary."

    I agree, I am sure "NO RINO 2012" would be the bumper sticker for the republican primary if Huntsman were to throw his hat into the ring.

    The very fact he is helping to implement the President's "socialist agenda" will doom him among the tea baggers.

    January 19, 2011 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  3. gt

    probably the most qualitied man to become the next leader of the united states....good move by obama to keep him in china

    January 19, 2011 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  4. civility is cool

    Well, looks like President Obama just dropped the tea bag bomb on any chance that Jon Huntsman had to win the GOP nomination. We know how those baggers feel about RINOs, don't we . . . wink, wink.

    January 19, 2011 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  5. XWngLady

    "The fact that he comes from a different party, I think, is a strength, not a weakness, because it indicates the degree to which both he and I believe the PARTISANSHIP ENDS AT THE WATER'S EDGE, and that we work together to advocate on behalf of our country,"........Very well said Mr. President. But of course your detractors will only try to find things to criticize instead of actually listening to what you have to say.

    January 19, 2011 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  6. sonny chapman

    THIS PRESIDENT, as George W. was referred to by his ever obedient followers, has a sense of humor.

    January 19, 2011 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
  7. Fed Up

    There probably won't be an election. The Chinese will have taken over by then, and Obama will have sold us out.

    January 19, 2011 05:31 pm at 5:31 pm |