Jon Huntsman, 51, is a former governor of Utah who most recently served as President Barack Obama’s ambassador to China, capping a long career of service at both the Commerce and State Departments. He dropped out of the race on January 15.
A scion of one of the wealthiest families in Utah, Huntsman has also served in various capacities for his family's chemical product business, Huntsman Corp. During his 2004 bid for the governorship, Huntsman focused on pursuing what he said would be a friendlier environment for business in the state.
As governor, Huntsman pushed an overhaul of Utah’s tax structure, in 2007 signing the state’s largest tax cut in history. After winning re-election with 78 percent of the vote in 2008, Huntsman also passed legislation reshaping the state’s health care system. He contrasts the resulting insurance-purchasing exchange in Utah with a government-run one that emerged from rival Mitt Romney’s time as governor of Massachusetts.
Huntsman began his political career as an intern for Utah Senator Orrin Hatch, another Republican, and then staff assistant to President Ronald Reagan. He later served in two deputy assistant Commerce secretary positions under President George H.W. Bush before being named in 1992 as ambassador to Singapore, the youngest person to hold such a position in 100 years. He also served as deputy U.S. trade ambassador for President George W. Bush.
A one-time high school dropout, Huntsman speaks fluent Mandarin, is an avid motocross racer and plays keyboards, once memorably with REO Speedwagon during his stint as governor. Born in Palo Alto, California, Huntsman spent most of his childhood in Utah and met his wife, Mary Kaye, in his high school courtyard.
Huntsman attended the University of Utah before taking a two-year Mormon mission to Taiwan from 1979 to 1981. He later graduated with a degree in international politics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1987. The Huntsmans have seven children, including two daughters adopted from China and India.
Jon Huntsman Jr. dropped out of the Republican presidential race and endorsed Mitt Romney, saying the party should unite behind the former Massachusetts governor as the candidate “best equipped” to defeat President Barack Obama.
Jon Huntsman Jr.’s bet that the contrarian impulse of New Hampshire voters would put him back in the Republican primary mix delivered a third-place finish that allows him to continue in the race for now.
Kathy DePasquale says she hasn’t ruled out voting a second time for President Barack Obama. Yet first the New Hampshire independent plans to pull a lever in the nation’s premier primary contest for Jon Huntsman Jr., the Republican she sees as the clearest-headed alternative.
Jon Huntsman, the former Utah governor and U.S. ambassador to China, lent his campaign $2.2 million, half of the money he’s brought in for his Republican presidential campaign, new Federal Election Commission reports show.
Republican presidential candidate Jon Huntsman called for scaling back U.S. involvement in international military engagements -- including Afghanistan -- and cutting military spending in a foreign policy address today.
Republican presidential contender Jon Huntsman Jr. questioned the electability of the two front- runners for his party’s nomination, saying some of Rick Perry’s views are out of the mainstream and Mitt Romney lacks foreign policy experience.
At least five Republican presidential candidates support eliminating taxes on capital gains, proposing even deeper cuts than former President George W. Bush endorsed and standing in contrast to advocates of higher investment tax rates such as Warren Buffett.
Republican presidential candidate and former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman Jr. criticized his rivals for the nomination, saying they showed “zero leadership” during the debate over raising the U.S. debt ceiling.
Jon Huntsman Jr., the former Utah governor and Obama administration envoy to China, formally announced his presidential bid today, positioning himself as an unconventional fresh face in a crowded Republican field.
An early 1970s photo in a Huntsman Corp. (HUN) annual report shows a smiling young Jon Huntsman Jr. holding a dozen eggs in polystyrene packaging, an innovation that helped make a fortune for the family business.
Jon Huntsman Jr., a former Utah governor who President Barack Obama appointed as his first U.S. ambassador to China, said today that he is planning to formally announce his Republican presidential bid next week.
More than a third of U.S. voters have some qualms about a Mormon president, even as Republicans prefer former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney over other presidential candidates, according to a new poll.
The presidential campaign of Jon M. Huntsman Jr. has always had the feel of a trial run for 2016. He didn’t bother to compete in Iowa, and his organization in the two upcoming primary states, South Carolina on Jan. 21 and Florida on Jan. 31, is threadbare.
With a vulnerable incumbent president, the profile of a strong Republican general-election opponent includes a consistently conservative record that eschews fringe views, a proven and scandal-free track record as an executive and respectable national-security credentials.
In an on-the-record conversation at a Bloomberg View editorial meeting, the former Utah governor and ambassador to China talked about what he was willing to do in his effort to reform the tax code and reduce the deficit.