Hours after Mitt Romney eked out a win over Rick Santorum in Iowa, Jon Huntsman, who ignored those caucuses to focus solely on New Hampshire, made the case that the race is still fluid.
“Essentially, you’ve got 75 percent of the party, at least as stated by Iowa, that is still looking for an alternative [to Romney],” Huntsman told reporters at a firefighter suit manufacturer on Wednesday morning. “And I say, that means there’s a whole lot of blue sky for the rest of us in the race. It’s anything but settled.”
Asked about Romney’s latest endorsement from Arizona senator John McCain—(or whose presidential campaign Huntsman was a national co-chair in 2008—the former Utah governor is dismissive. “I have great regard for Senator McCain,” he said. “I love the man. But it’s another example of the establishment piling on…You can get all the Doles and all the McCains in the world, as Romney probably will. But in the end, nobody cares.”
Huntsman, it seems, believes he can emulate Santorum’s surprising success in Iowa by going from even to event and by meeting with voters. He noted today that he held his 150th New Hampshire event yesterday in Peterborough. He often jokes that he’s spent so much time in the state that he’s picking up the local accent. “We’re doing it the old-fashioned way,” Huntsman said.