Sad News: Jon Huntsman Passes on 2016

Posted: Oct 08, 2014 1:45 PM

And not just 2016, either. He’s apparently also ruled out running for his old job in Utah (via Politico):

“I can’t describe a pathway through the early primary states up to Super Tuesday, and if you can’t find that pathway or describe what that pathway is, then you had [better] not be in the race,” Huntsman said in an exclusive interview for POLITICO’s “Lessons from Leaders” series.

Huntsman also dismissed any future run for state office. “I’ve been governor, elected twice as governor, but when you get elected with about 80 percent of the vote, if you try to do that over again, you’re never going to be as good as the first time around. I think its fool-hearted to try,” he said.

Perhaps this is for the best.

If he can’t articulate to himself how he’d clinch the GOP presidential nomination (after all, he’s already been down this road before and flamed out early), why on earth would he run again? A generous estimate would place his chances of getting the nod in 2016 at about … 0 percent. So while no-shot politicians oftentimes run for president (for financial and commercial gain, networking purposes, or to stroke their own egos), Huntsman’s decision to sit this one out is actually quite commendable since he freely admits he has no chance of winning.

This isn’t to say, however, that Huntsman is retiring from public life or staying out of the spotlight. On the contrary, Politico notes that Huntsman is currently “serving as co-chairman of the bipartisan No Labels group that is striving to make Washington more functional.” Presumably, then, this will keep him busy as he focuses his attention on reforming Washington and bridging the partisan divide on Capitol Hill.

This is worthy undertaking. And of course, one that better suits his skills and experiences than running for a political office he will never win.