Search This Blog

Defying the Odds

Defying the Odds
New book about the 2016 election.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Huntsman Trouble

Jon Huntsman has to deal with the kind of story that presidential candidates hate. Jonathan Martin reports at Politico:

A blistering internal feud in the Jon Huntsman presidential campaign is erupting into public view, with dueling camps trading charges and an exodus of campaign officials.

And now, a longtime family friend tells POLITICO that Huntsman’s wife and father fret that his presidential prospects have been threatened by the turmoil — and he places the blame on John Weaver, Huntsman’s controversial chief strategist.

Huntsman himself is so worried about the “drama,” as he calls it, that he’s taken a hands-on role in the restructuring, in hopes of rebounding from early missteps before it’s too late to improve his bottom-of-the-pack standing.

“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 an email to the friend just hours after the resignation of his first campaign manager, Susie Wiles, became public July 21.

“Goodness will overcome the temporary difficulties and early turf-protecting within the campaign,” wrote Huntsman, adding: “I love you like a brother.”

The recipient of that email — David Fischer, who has known Huntsman since the 1980s and later worked for his father — shared with POLITICO behind-the-scenes details about Huntsman’s stumbling start.

Fischer is pushing back against a story in RealClearPolitics:
At a time when the staffers ought to be focused on doing something -- anything -- to help their candidate into the first tier of competitors, Fischer was a distraction. "He acted like a hall monitor," said one campaign aide. "There was a cloud on morale down there [in Orlando]." In fact, this staff member said, most aides kept their doors closed in the headquarters on the days that Fischer was in the office.