Jon Huntsman’s campaign was a better idea than it was a reality, and the idea was John Weaver’s.
Weaver, a rangy, 52-year old Texan has a storied and controversial career in Republican politics, and now an uncertain future. And the Huntsman campaign is the latest and purest version of a strategy that he’s been pressing since he was at John McCain’s right hand in 2000: A Republican campaign that embraces the mainstream media, sets itself against elements of conservative dogma, and builds a coalition of moderate Republicans and independents that – if it could only survive the primary – would be formidable in a general election. The campaign’s birth in baroque intrigue and its high-level infighting are also Weaver signatures.
Weaver also spearheaded a much-more-successful (but not a winning) candidate in John McCain, and Huntsman’s failure to get off the ground led to much criticism from pundits on the right. Read more here.