Monday, December 5, 2011

Huntsman: I won't kiss Trump's ring

Jon Huntsman, making quite a show of his decision to boycott Donald Trump's debate.

"I'm not going to kiss his ring, and I'm not going to kiss any other part of his anatomy.

This is exactly what is wrong with politics. It's show business versus substance.

If he had any courage at all, he would be running for president of the United States of America, as opposed to manipulating the process from the outside."

Soon after word of the debate broke, I predicted that Huntsman would make a spectacle of rejecting the debate, and less than an hour later, he put out a statement with an "lol" about the debate, a "suck-up" and "big bowl of popcorn."

Huntsman's had a history of this type of thing. He claims to be the serious candidate but often willingly indulges the silly as a means for propping his candidacy up.

As I wrote in October:

As befits a former ambassador, Huntsman has tried casting himself as the candidate who disdains political theater.

.... But Huntsman has shown himself more than willing to veer from the high-minded to the high-ratings. In August, he leapt to, sparked and profited from another debate that had little to do with how the country is governed or who should lead it — one, in fact, that’s also somewhat religious.

After Texas Gov. Rick Perry expressed some skepticism over evolution, Huntsman derisively tweeted: “To be clear. I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy.”

And with that snide foray into the “drama and theater” of politics, he added more Twitter followers in one day than any other politician except Obama, Scientific American reported.

That’s not the only time the serious candidate descended into the snarky. During a CNN presidential debate, he made an obscure joke about musician Kurt Cobain that landed him on Anderson Cooper’s “Ridiculist,” and provoked widespread media derision for “lame jokes and petty one-liners” throughout the night, as Business Insider wrote.