Good Grief, Jon Huntsman Plays ‘Charlie Brown’ (Video)
Jon Huntsman has at least caught one break since entering the 2012 presidential race: coverage of him playing the ‘Charlie Brown’ theme.
Jon Huntsman seemed like a breath of fresh air when he entered the presidential race in May, months after speculation had already mounted about the Republican’s career path.
As President Obama’s ambassador to China, the former Utah governor had already proven his bipartisan politics and his moderate stance on social issues set him apart from a Republican pack hellbent on demonizing gay people and abortion.
It didn’t take long, however, for initial excitement among press and pundits to subside, and Huntsman has struggled to gain footing ever since.
Even his few high-profile statements — attacks on “abysmal” fellow Mormon candidate Mitt Romney, saying that Michele Bachmann makes “good copy” and “good photography,” coming out in favor of raising the debt-ceiling and suggesting impeachment for Obama’s Libyan intervention — have failed to garner him much financial or electoral love: he’s barely registering on nationwide polls, and still has only raised $4.1 million, half of which came from his own deep pockets.
He’s not a complete long-shot, but he’s still struggling to find a niche and make major headlines. In fact, the biggest stories about him so far, it seems, developed over the past two days.
First, the big one, which won’t help at all: Huntsman and campaign strategist John Weaver are allegedly at odds.
“I look forward to a future of less drama, more money and increasing contrasts with my opponents. We can win this thing,” Huntsman wrote in a personal email to a friend, apparently about Weaver, Politico reports.
With his private campaign drama now online and in public, Huntsman has come out to say he and Weaver are still friends and, lest any potential donors get nervous, Weaver will stay on as strategist.
“John Weaver is a critically important part of our team,” Huntsman said today. “He’s our strategist, has been from day one, and he will be. He’s a great friend and he’s indispensable to the campaign.
We’ll have to wait and see whether the candidate’s proclamation helps, hinders or has no impact on his flagging campaign.
The other story of this week is far more charming, and may win over more voters than any of Huntsman’s stump speeches: the candidate was at a music store in Manchester, New Hampshire, yesterday, and demonstrated his aural skills by playing composer Vince Guaraldi’s most famous tune, the theme to Charlie Brown.
It’s not perfect, and it’s not full-length, but Huntsman’s performance yesterday may very well be the humanizing ticket to wooing new supporters and capturing the attention of the many millions who have never heard of him.
Perhaps Huntsman may still turn this thing around, rather than becoming an “also-ran” who gave up an actual job for nothing but a pipe dream.