Trump/Huntsman 2016? A man who quite possibly gave up his best chance to be president by honorably answering President Obama's call to serve his country as Ambassador to China would, presumably, also be open to serving America again as Donald Trump's running mate and then as vice-president.
Here are six major reasons why Huntsman could be considered as an ideal running mate for Donald Trump and the GOP for 2016;
1.Foreign Policy Experience
As a former Ambassador to China, Huntsman would bring an unquestioned and highly regarded foreign policy experience to support Trump in this crucial area. Since a major part of Trump's policy pronouncements focused on a new, fairer to America and it's workers relationship with China, Huntsman's connections with senior Chinese policy makers adds experience and realism to Trump's
2. Experience In Government.
Huntsman was a *successful prudent and **popular governor. He appears to have no enemies in Congress and might be the ideal person Trump described in his VP's credentials wish list.
“The main quality that you want is somebody that can be a great president. If something happens to you… that’s gotta be number one,” he said. “And then I would want somebody that could help me with government. Most likely that would be a political person. I’m business and I’m very good at what I do… [but] I’m also very, very political.”
Huntsman is the one Republican the ***Democratic party and the liberal media have continually touted as "the one we fear." They describe him (as a foil to attack some other Republican) as "the only sane, moderate electable Republican." For those forces to then turn around and attack the man that President Obama chose (with, presumably, no Democrat up to the job) as the best equipped to handle the vital role as Ambassador to China would look downright silly.
4. Voter Appeal.
Huntsman is a Mormon, this might be of value electorally in shoring up Utah, which Trump lost substantially in the primary, as well as assisting in New Mexico and the crucial swing state of Colorado. On the other hand, those Republicans who did not vote for Romney as president might not be concerned about voting for a Mormon as vice-president and could be brought back into the GOP's fold for 2016.
5. Compatibility with Trump
Huntsman played no part in the primary campaign, least of all in the "Never Trump" movement, which seems to fit his character. Thus there are no negative 'sound bites" by Huntsman that the opposition could use against Trump. Once it seemed certain that Trump would be the nominee Huntsman was among the first to endorse him in that capacity.
6. Conservative Bona Fides.
Huntsman was perceived as 'too centrist" for the base in his 2012 presidential tilt, but his absolute ****right to life principles and *****family man image and lifestyle would provide a surety and counterweight for those who are hesitant to about Trump in those areas.
Huntsman would set aside any notion of Trump "pandering to women" by choosing a female running mate, and may have a positive influence on women who are hesitant because of those aspects and who would view his choice as a dedication to country and principles above faction and gender for gender's sake.
Huntsman on immigration is a mixed bag, but the "fence" aspect cancels out the citizenship for future illegals.
"as an American, the thought of a fence to some extent repulses me ... but the situation is such that I don't think we have a choice." Huntsman supported the
DREAM Act which proposed a path to citizenship for young people brought to the United States by their parents illegally.
Whether Huntsman's views in this area and same-sex marriage are enough to negate all the six major points would be for Trump to decide, if he were so inclined to consider Huntsman.
Whether these views would make fewer Republican, Independent and "Sanders' refugees" to support Trump than would support him is also a matter of debate. I personally don't think it would. At the end of the day it is the president who gets policy done not the Veep and a Huntsman vice-presidential candidacy could, on balance, be a substantial voting plus.
N.B. A team player
* Utah was named the best managed state by the Pew Center on the States. Following his term as governor, Utah was also named a top 3 state to do business in
** In November 2004, Huntsman was elected governor with 58% of the vote. In 2008, Huntsman won re-election with 77.7% of the vote,
Huntsman maintained high approval ratings as Governor of Utah, reaching 90% approval
*** On November 20, 2012, Obama's campaign manager Jim Messina suggested that the Obama campaign believed Huntsman would have been a particularly difficult candidate to face in the general election. Messina said that the campaign was "honest about our concerns about Huntsman" and that Huntsman "would have been a very tough candidate.
**** As the Governor of Utah, Huntsman signed numerous bills restricting abortion.
***** Huntsman has eight brothers and sisters, and he and his wife, Mary Kaye, have seven children: Mary Anne (b. 1985), Abigail (b. 1986), Elizabeth ("Liddy"; b. 1988), Jon III (b. 1990), William (b. 1993), Gracie Mei (b. 1999; adopted from China), and Asha Bharati (b. 2006; adopted from India).