Huntsman hits Romney ahead of N.H. primary
January 5th, 2012
08:17 PM ET
11 years ago

Huntsman hits Romney ahead of N.H. primary

(CNN) – Asked about Mitt Romney on Thursday, Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman described the former Massachusetts governor as an inconsistent candidate.

"What is your core? You run for the Senate as a liberal. You run for governor as a moderate. You run for president as a conservative," Huntsman said on CNN's "John King, U.S.A." "People want to know who you were yesterday and what you're going to be tomorrow."

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His remarks come five days before New Hampshire's first-in-the-nation primary, a contest Romney is widely expected to win, given his consistently high poll numbers in the state.

According to a Suffolk University/7 News two-day tracking poll released Thursday, Romney has the support of 41% of likely Republican New Hampshire primary voters, with Ron Paul placing a distant second at 18%.

Huntsman, despite coming in with 7% support, is counting on a big showing in the primary, having spent almost all of his time in the state.

Huntsman downplayed Romney's razor-thin Iowa victory on Tuesday, pointing out the frontrunner only garnered a total of 25% of the vote.

"There's a lot of opportunity to run for growth. As we saw in Iowa, the establishment, 75% of those basically said that's not where we're going. We want an alternative," Huntsman said. "I think the same is true in New Hampshire as it is throughout the country."

Asked Thursday where he expects to place in the primary, the former Utah governor said he anticipates exceeding "market expectations" and believes there are several tickets out of New Hampshire.

Late Thursday night, The Boston Globe endorsed Huntsman, giving him a big boost just days before the contest.

Also see:

DNC highlights old Romney-McCain tension

Gingrich hones message in New Hampshire

Santorum raises more than $1 million in one night

Huntsman to air first TV spot

Perry will 'reset the campaign' in South Carolina, adviser says

Filed under: 2012 • Jon Huntsman • New Hampshire • TV-John King U.S.A.
soundoff (13 Responses)
  1. andres

    Huntsman is exactly the candiate needed to unseat Obama. An intelligent moderate who does not pander to the teaparty or the fundamentalists. But sadly the republican whackos will carry the day and ensure Obama another 4 years.

    January 5, 2012 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |

    Easily the best candidate running in 25 years.

    January 5, 2012 09:45 pm at 9:45 pm |
  3. Carpe Diem

    I believe Hunstman is the THE best candidate for President. Intelligence, business experience, executive experience, and international experience all would make him a great President. The problem is that the GOP party is controlled by the extreme right and Hunstman is a moderate, making him a great choice for the General election but ineffectual as a primary election candidate.
    As an Independent I'll vote for a moderate from either party...but I believe the extremes on both sides are unacceptable and are the BIGGEST cause of disfunction in our government.

    January 5, 2012 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  4. Thomas

    Jon Huntsman is right.

    But the right dosn't care , he's to smart to be a repuplican.

    January 6, 2012 12:30 am at 12:30 am |
  5. ThinkAgain

    Huntsman is the sanest one of all the GOP candidates. Still, he believes in the GOP's economic, military and foreign policies – all of which are PROVEN FAILURES – so he'd never get enough votes from anyone to ever get above about 2%.

    January 6, 2012 12:32 am at 12:32 am |
  6. J.V.Hodgson

    Huntsman is the dark horse in the Republican race. I remain an independent and would not vote for him c/f Obama, but he is the closest to any of the current hopefuls on the Republican side to getting my vote.

    January 6, 2012 01:48 am at 1:48 am |
  7. SiriusVH

    Obama/Huntsman would be a nice ticket ......

    January 6, 2012 02:14 am at 2:14 am |
  8. andrew

    Huntsman's problem is that he is an intelligent and reasonable man who is trying to win the nomination of a political party controlled by the lunatic fringe.

    January 6, 2012 02:38 am at 2:38 am |
  9. Tea Party

    No comments = does not look good for Huntsman. Too bad he is a good candidate.

    January 6, 2012 08:12 am at 8:12 am |
  10. Gurgi

    Huntsman/Rice, now that would be a ticket to make the liberal's heads explode.

    January 6, 2012 09:28 am at 9:28 am |
  11. M-AZ Independent -


    I agreee. Obama/Huntsman with Secretary Clinton in the mix, is a great combination. Three brillant people; they don't agree on EVERTHING, but they could agree to disagree and work together. Imagine that.

    So far,
    Obama/Biden 2012

    January 6, 2012 09:41 am at 9:41 am |
  12. Tom Joad

    Huntsman is the only sane republican candidate. Let us hope that there are still some sane voters in the republican party who haven't fled since the takeover by the tea p[arty.

    January 6, 2012 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  13. Sandy

    Huntsman is running in the wrong race. He should run in 2016. I think he'd have a better chance then.

    January 6, 2012 10:35 am at 10:35 am |