Huntsman: We're going to bring it home in Florida

Huntman has been struggling in the polls, and on Friday he suffered another shakeup of his campaign team when Florida-based operative Lanny Wiles left his operation, which follows the resignation of Susie Wiles, Lanny's wife and Huntsman former campaign manager last month.


Then again, this could be addition by subtraction, as Politico reports that Lanny Wiles was responsible for his less than impressive kickoff event in New Jersey earlier this summer.


But back to his interview on ABC, where Huntsman made perhaps his biggest impression of his rather ho-hum campaign to date, in part by blasting the men and woman who all are riding higher than he is right now in political polls as being unelectable.


And with just a few comments, he attempted to present himself as the grownup in the race, taking shots at Michelle Bachmann, Rick Perry and Mitt Romney for some of their comments of positions.


When told that the former Massachusetts Governor is in agreement with him that the U.S. should go to a flat tax system of collecting revenue from the American public, Huntsman said:


HUNTSMAN: Well, I know in 1996 he was against a flat tax. You know, if we were to talk about his inconsistencies and the changes on various issues, we'd be here all afternoon. But if he's in favor of a flat tax now where he wasn't before, at least he's moving in the right direction.


On Michelle Bachmann's declaration last week that if she's elected president next year, gas prices will drop below $2 a gallon?


HUNTSMAN: You know, I just — I just don't know what — what world that comment would come from, you know? We live in the real world. It's grounded in reality. And gas prices just aren't going to rebound like that.


But just as we are in a static world, that is completely unrealistic. And, again, it's talking about things that, you know, may pander to a particular group or sound good at the time, but it just simply is not founded in reality.


And on Rick Perry, who said last week that he evolution hasn't been proven and he remains a skeptic on man made climate change, Huntsman said this:


HUNTSMAN: I think there's a serious problem. The minute that the Republican Party becomes the party — the anti-science party, we have a huge problem. We lose a whole lot of people that would otherwise allow us to win the election in 2012.


When we take a position that isn't willing to embrace evolution, when we take a position that basically runs counter to what 98 of 100 climate scientists have said, what the National Academy of Sciences has said about what is causing climate change and man's contribution to it, I think we find ourselves on the wrong side of science and, therefore, in a losing position.


In our review of the GOP debate in Iowa 10 days ago, CL wrote that if Mitt Romney were the nominee next year, he would take back his raising his hand when asked if he walk away from a deal on reducing the debt by taking $10 of spending cuts with $1 dollar in tax raises.


But Huntsman, apparently succumbing to peer pressure, explained to Jake Tapper on Sunday that he really didn't mean it when he stood with his 7 fellow competitors on that question on a hypothetical deal to reduce the federal debt. When queried about it on Sunday, he replied by ridiculing the way the question was posed by Fox's Brett Bret Baier (as did Karl Rove on Fox News Sunday)


HUNTSMAN: Jake, it was a nonsense question. And the fact that you can even ask a question that is that important with such profound implications for the United States, to answer by show of a raised hand, I mean, come on. What have — you know, what have debates gotten to, in terms of how we discuss the truly important issues of the day? I don't think tax increases are good for this country right now. In fact, I think it'd be the worst thing that we can do.


TAPPER: So are you sorry you raised your hand for the, quote, "nonsense question"?


HUNTSMAN: Well, I'm just sorry that the debate resorted to a raising of hand as opposed to some discussion about where this country needs to go in terms of overall tax policy.


Huntsman, who stepped down as Barack Obama's Ambassador to China just a few months ago, ended the interview by playing down the fact he has yet to break on through in any form with the GOP electorate, at least based on polls. But he said that he's just getting started, and says he's putting maximum effort in New Hampshire, the more socially conservative South Carolina primary, and "then we're going to bring it home in Florida," which will vote sometime after those states early next year, and is already the focus of attention with the Presidency 5 straw poll taking place in Orlando next month.


Meanwhile, one group ecstatic about Huntmsan's dumping on his fellow GOP colleagues was the opposition: the Democratic National Committee, who blasted out this statement hours after Huntsman's interview aired.

As some leading conservatives express their dissatisfaction with the present field of candidates running to face Barack Obama next year, one of those candidates already in the race, former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman, today laid out his agenda as the centrist, thinking man's choice for the 2012 nomination.

Getting his first prime time real estate on Sunday morning talk, Huntsman went negative in a conversation with Jake Tapper on ABC's This Week, where he talked about going against the grain of the Republican party circa 2011 by being rational and sticking with the facts when it comes to issues like global warming:

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