After a grueling campaign season, Obama’s campaign manager Jim Messina sat down for a rare on camera interview Tuesday morning with Politico’s White House corespondent Mike Allen. Allen asked Messina “what republican candidate would have had the best shot at beating your boss?”
Messina thought for a moment and said, “I think we were honest about our concerns about Huntsman.”
“I think Huntsman would have been a very tough general election candidate,” he continued. “He’s a good guy. We looked at his profile in a general election and thought he would have been difficult.”
On January 31, 2011, Huntsman submitted his resignation from his post as U.S. Ambassador to China. Huntsman formally entered the race for the Republican presidential nomination on June 21, 2011, announcing his bid in a speech at Liberty State Park in New Jersey. The former Utah governor finished third in the New Hampshire primary and announced the end of his campaign on January 16, 2012, endorsing Mitt Romney.
If he would have made it to the general election, the 2012 campaign would have certainly looked different: