When President Obama appointed Utah Governor Jon Huntsman to serve as U.S. ambassador to China in 2009, political strategists deemed it a cunning political move. Enlisting Hunstman, a fast-rising GOP star, would surely preclude him from launching a 2012 presidential bid. Or so they thought...
This week, Newsweek's McKay Coppins advances the notion that Huntsman will run in 2012. It's a highly speculative piece and some are already pouring cold water on it. Nevertheless, it relies on two reported moments. First, the interview Huntsman gives to Coppins.
"You know, I’m really focused on what we’re doing in our current position,” Huntsman says. “But we won’t do this forever, and I think we may have one final run left in our bones.” Coppins then presses him on 2012 and Huntsman "declines to comment." To Coppins that was a "winking response" or "about as close to a hat-in-ring announcement as you’ll get from a sitting member of the incumbent’s administration."
Secondly, Huntsman insiders tell Coppins that the former Utah governor has been meeting with "several former political advisers in Washington and Salt Lake City to discuss a potential  campaign." And that's a wrap.