In the past 48 hours, I have received a lot of criticism for my takedown of Jon Huntsman. Some of it was not surprising, i.e. when you want to see the traitor Jonathan Pollard freed instead of hanged, you can't be expected to understand arguments about loyalty and honor. Some of it was surprising.
The most interesting aspect of it all is that the older the conservative or the further south the conservative lives, the more likely they are to understand and agree with my point. The Texans I know are largely uniform in agreement that the act is both dishonorable and disloyal.
Ultimately that is the point. In the past 48 hours, in addition to the incoming fire, a lot of people both inside and outside the Huntsman camp have wondered if this is all cover for some other grievance against Huntsman. Put as clearly and simply as I can — no.
I view being an American a higher thing than being a Republican or a conservative. And I view what Jon Huntsman did — openly plotting a Presidential bid against the President of the United States while serving the President of the United States in China — to be both profoundly disloyal and profoundly dishonorable.
However, the more I learn about Jon Huntsman's character, the less it surprises me.
In a Salt Lake Tribune article from yesterday it is clear Jon Huntsman, a Mormon, does not take his faith very seriously.
Huntsman hasn’t addressed his faith to the same degree, though he hinted last year that he wasn’t a devout Mormon.
In a 2010 interview with Fortune magazine, Huntsman, then serving as the U.S. ambassador to China, talked briefly about his personal faith, with the magazine terming his Mormon credentials “soft.”
“I can’t say I’m overly religious,” Huntsman said. “I get satisfaction from many different types of religions and philosophies.”
I'm sorry, but I want a guy who takes his faith seriously. And if he is not going to take his faith seriously, if he has no honor in his conduct while serving the President of the United States, and if he is not loyal to the President he serves, count me out.
I think we do not value honor, loyalty, and faith enough in this country and the embrace of many of Jon Huntsman and the dismissal of these concerns by many as frivolous are just added indicators in how far down the road to Gomorrah we have gone.
Now, one of the common reactions has been, in effect, "Well, surely Obama knew and had no problem with it."
Let's just get this out there — Barack Obama started his political career in the home of a terrorist. He's not exactly known to embrace traditional American virtues. He's certainly, as President, never shown himself to give a damn about precedents of the office.
And because Barack Obama cares so little about the office in which the nation has entrusted him, I think we are forced to care more for it. We must be willing to say it is dishonorable, disloyal, and a terrible precedent for an Ambassador of the United States, while still on the job, to begin openly and publicly contemplating a challenge to the President he serves.
We should not reward people like Jon Huntsman.