Jon Huntsman delivered his first policy speech of the campaign in New Hampshire yesterday, but while he is set in his first-in-the-nation aspirations, his local campaign is experiencing some major changes.
Huntsman has fired his New Hampshire campaign manager Ethan Eilon, who joined the campaign earlier this summer. Eilon will be replaced by Tim Pawlenty’s former New Hampshire Campaign Manager Sarah Crawford Stewart.
In a statement, Huntsman’s chief strategist John Weaver says: “Ethan is a fine person and we were fortunate to have him on our team. He helped lay the groundwork for a superior organization. We had an amicable parting of the ways and look forward to working with him again.”
“Sarah Crawford Stewart, a seasoned New Hampshire strategist, will be taking over many of the day-to-day responsibilities in her role as New Hampshire senior adviser,” said Huntsman’s spokesperson Tim Miller. “The campaign is very pleased with the leadership team we have in place in New Hampshire.”
Stewart joined Huntsman’s campaign as a senior consultant just days after Pawlenty exited the race. She told New Hampshire’s Union Leader that week, “Gov. Huntsman is committed to winning the New Hampshire primary, and I look forward to helping him and his team do just that.”
“I viewed Gov. Huntsman as somebody with exceptional governing experience,” Stewart continued. “I viewed him as someone who would be the strongest competitor against President Obama in a general election.”
Huntsman’s performance in New Hampshire is crucial to the success of the campaign. In July, the associated press reported that Huntsman’s New Hampshire staff was almost triple the size of any other presidential candidates’, with 21 staffers on payroll.
Huntsman would not confirm the number at the time, but told ABC News affiliate WMUR that the campaign was “building a great ground game. We have a terrific team and we are well organized throughout the state and we are going to be spending a whole lot of time here.”