Huntsman cancels Republican Leadership Conference appearance
June 16th, 2011
04:49 PM ET
12 years ago

Huntsman cancels Republican Leadership Conference appearance

Washington (CNN) – Just days before Jon Huntsman is set to become the latest candidate to enter the Republican presidential field, the former U.S. ambassador to China is canceling a Friday speech before the influential Republican Leadership Conference in New Orleans due to a bad cold.

Huntsman spokesman Tim Miller confirmed that due to illness the future candidate could not make a Thursday plane to deliver the speech in New Orleans before the major gathering of conservative activists.

Instead his wife, Mary Kaye, and two daughters will be traveling to the event and will meet with supporters, Miller said, but Mrs. Huntsman will not give a speech.

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, businessman Herman Cain, Reps. Ron Paul and Michele Bachmann, former senator Rick Santorum and Texas Governor Rick Perry will be speaking to the conference, which gets underway Thursday night. Former Governors Mitt Romney and Tim Pawlenty decided not to attend.

Miller said at this point the cold is not expected to have any impact on Huntsman's scheduled announcement next week of his presidential candidacy.

Huntsman was in Washington Wednesday night for a fundraiser.

He is set to launch his campaign next Tuesday at Liberty State Park in New Jersey with the Statue of Liberty as the backdrop. Huntsman will follow the announcement with a tour where he will travel to politically key states. He also has a series of fundraisers across the country on tap, a source close to Huntsman confirmed to CNN. Beginning in New York Tuesday night, he will also hold at least 18 money events the next two weeks in South Carolina, Florida, his home state of Utah, California, Texas, Illinois, Michigan, and Massachusetts before ending the swing in New York on June 30th.

The key second quarter for fundraising wraps up at the end of the month, and many of the Republican presidential hopefuls are working to have impressive totals to report for the period.

- CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this story.

- You can follow Kevin Bohn on Twitter @KevinBohnCNN.

Filed under: 2012 • Jon Huntsman • Republicans
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. Georgia Girl

    I guess he should have worn a heavier coat on his little motorcycle ride on his video.

    June 16, 2011 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  2. Martha in CF

    A cold? Maybe he is second guessing his run.

    June 16, 2011 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  3. Mark from Louisiana

    I'm still wondering why the republicans are going to New Orleans, the welfare crowd there sure won't welcome them. Unless they think the republicans will give them money for nothing.

    June 16, 2011 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  4. ja

    just grandstanding, he would be smart to cancel entire process of nomination, obama's election caused an uproar in the mindset of the intolerant americans( nicely stated)

    June 16, 2011 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  5. The Elephant in The Room

    A Republican LEADERSHIP Conference, eh?

    I'll be pleasantly surprised if I hear anything useful that helps me assess the leadership capabilities of these potential candidates. For example:

    a) The BIGGEST part of Leadership is having a forward looking vision of a "To-Be" state.
    b) Next having a SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant & Timely) plan to make it a reality is a requirement to be credible.
    c) Finally, being able to bring together a diverse team and motivate them to implement the Plan - in the face of obstructionists / opposition - is what makes the difference between a Pretender and a Contender.

    I'll bet you $1,000, we won't hear anything around those tenets of "Leadership" from the speakers at this conference. Any takers?

    June 16, 2011 05:12 pm at 5:12 pm |
  6. Republican Robber Baron

    Don't worry...the GOP establishment "leadership" is useless anyways. I do think Huntsman is one of the extremely few Republicans out there with enough class to compliment his boss Obama, instead of attack him for everything.

    June 16, 2011 05:17 pm at 5:17 pm |
  7. rsadler

    His dad has a private jet. He can fly anywhere at anytime, with or without a cold....

    June 16, 2011 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  8. Sniffit

    His dog ate his speech notes.

    June 16, 2011 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  9. A Kickin' Donkey

    He seems to really to work at avoiding these collective Republican gatherings.

    It won't be long before the Tea Party crowd gets scared that he is willing to be moderate & compromise – (translationL he's a dreaded RINO).

    June 16, 2011 05:35 pm at 5:35 pm |
  10. gt

    he sounds like someone who is running in a race and will stay in the pack and then try to pass everyone on the final turn...

    June 16, 2011 05:39 pm at 5:39 pm |
  11. drogo, the stallion that mounts the world

    Obviously this guy is not ready for prime time if he can't manage the common cold. Weeny!

    June 16, 2011 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  12. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Is it a cold or "cold feet".

    June 16, 2011 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  13. w l jonesj

    It make me me smile when I here the words conservative and welfare with same breath because we are conserv. with our monies but welfare with other people money.

    June 16, 2011 06:20 pm at 6:20 pm |