Jon Huntsman’s Full Court Press

May 20, 2011 2:51pm

ABC News' Sarah Kunin reports: While Jon Huntsman may have ventured to New Hampshire to mix and mingle with voters, he’s spent more time weaving through hordes of cameras and microphones than shaking hands. 

Today marked the first time the press had full access to the former ambassador since his return to the United States three weeks ago, and it’s clear that everyone wanted to make up for lost time.

When a press gaggle formed inside the home of Huntsman’s Hancock, N.H. host, the former Utah governor was visibly annoyed. 

“We completely screwed up her living room," he said. “I hope someone’s apologizing.”

Some of the event’s attendees were frustrated as well. One woman at the Hancock house party was overheard telling another guest: "I thought it would be 20 people, just Republicans getting to know him, not all these liberals, independents, and reporters."

Though Huntsman’s first two days in New Hampshire may not have taken place in the intimate setting some locals were expecting, most residents at his events seemed excited about his potential run for president of the United States.

“I appreciated the ambassador’s response that he was serving his president,” Marilyn Soper, of Keene, N.H., said of his comments in the ABC News' interview with George Stephanopoulos. “I agree with that. As citizens of this country, we all serve our president whether we agree with his politics or not.”

Huntsman’s Obama-appointed ambassadorship continues to be a topic of interest for voters and reporters alike.

At today’s Hancock event, one reporter asked, “How do you convince voters that you’re a viable Republican candidate?”

“I’m the margin of error guy,” Huntsman said. “Everybody carries some description of who they are. It’s a little artificial and I think we need to probe beyond these tags of Democrat, moderate, conservative and really take a look at what people have done and what they’re willing to do going forward. There’s no better way to do that than to look at somebody’s established record.”

Another reporter asked Huntsman to describe himself. 

“Since I’m not much into labels, I’m not going to give myself a label,” he replied. “I’m going to say I’m a pragmatic problem solver. When I was governor, I worked for the people of my state…  In order to fulfill their needs I’m going to be the pragmatic problem solver in getting their work done."


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