"Huntsman is still widely respected by the administration even if he'd hoped to unseat Obama. Choosing Huntsman would allow the president to claim bipartisanship while putting an Asia expert in the job at a time when the U.S. is focusing more attention on the world's most populous continent."This is as dumb ass a move as I've ever seen. I can't imagine anyone at a high level in the Obama Administration could possibly be this stupid. So I'm going to go ahead and chalk this up to crap reporting and balloon floating by some Washington establishment types loyal to Huntsman. But just in case:
Huntsman just waged a campaign against our guy and failed miserably at it. He has no Republican constituency to be all lovey dovey bipartisany with. He'd bring almost no Republicans to the table. Scratch that. He'd being exactly zero Republicans to the table. I can just imagine what his confirmation hearings would be like: a god awful catastrophe. And given that Huntsman has no proven he isn't ready for the national stage, putting him before a Senate hearing at the top of the new session would be an abysmal disaster. Even if he managed to clear a vote, he'd be so damaged a Secretary he'd be unlikely to be taken seriously by the world.
Secondly, John Kerry is making it pretty clear he wants the job. He hasn't made any effort to tamp down the reporting on this point. He's been spending a great deal of time with the President during debate prep. Furthermore, he was an early supporter of President Obama in 2008, turning over to him a valuable fundraising and email list. Were it not for a heavyweight of Hillary Clinton in the job, he most certainly should have gotten the job. And it was John Kerry who gave that kick ass speech for Barack Obama on foreign policy at the convention this summer. John Kerry is the Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee. Can you imagine what a hearing would be like having to pass judgement on huntsman? He'd be well within his rights and powers to shoot down Huntsman's nomination and thoroughly embarrass the President.
Finally, Huntsman isn't nearly as qualified for the job as some of the other loyal Democrats whove been talked about. Huntsman was a Governor, an ambassador for two years, and that's about the full extent of his foreign policy experience. Additionally, the proper secretary of state has to be a person who not only can command the ear of the President but also have the necessary political gravitas so that foreign leaders have every reason to take that person seriously. John Kerry is such a person without question.
I totally got the brilliant Obama stratagem of taking Huntsman off the table for 2012 by sending him overseas back in 2009. He essentially gave up a shot at the presidency for a job usually given to wealthy campaign socialites with nothing better to do. That Hunstman was dumb enough to go along with it says something about him. But now that he is ruined in Republican politics and finished in his home state, he's not even close to being useful. Especially considering all the heartburn his nomination would cause among rank and file Democrats. I'd certainly be pissed.