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(CNN) – Here’s what I especially liked about Jon Huntsman’s presidential announcement in front of the Statue of Liberty. He called for some civility in the race for the White House.
Unlike several of the other Republican candidates, he did not open with a blistering assault on President Obama.
Instead, Huntsman said this: “We will conduct this campaign on the high road. I don’t think you need to run down someone’s reputation in order to run for the office of president. Of course, we’ll have our disagreements. That’s what campaigns are all about. But I want you to know that I respect my fellow Republican candidates. And I respect the President of the United States.”
He then pointedly added: “He and I have a difference of opinion on how to help a country we both love. But the question each of us wants the voters to answer is who will be the better president; not who’s the better American.”
Maybe we should not be surprised by that positive tone. Huntsman, after all, gave up his job as Governor of Utah when President Obama asked him to serve as U.S. Ambassador to China – a job Huntsman, by all accounts, did well. I don’t know if his campaign will resonate with the Republican base. It’s way too early to tell. But in the short term, let’s see if his high road has an impact on his GOP rivals.