The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Gov. Benzene: Huntsman a ‘Green’ Phony

Posted on | September 8, 2011 | 19 Comments

For weeks, I’ve been mystified and irritated by the media’s love affair with Jon Huntsman, the former Utah governor who joined the Obama administration just about the time most conservatives were joining the Tea Party movement.

Why the hell is this guy — “Governor Asterisk,” an irrelevant distraction, a Charlie Crist clone who represents no actual GOP constituency — being included in the Republican debates and treated with fawning deference by the media? After last night’s debate, when Huntsman attacked Rick Perry as “anti-science” for his skepticism toward global warming, I remarked, “Might as well invite Al Gore to the GOP debates.”

Turns out that remark was more accurate than I suspected because, just like Gore, Huntsman is a two-faced hypocrite whose “green” rhetoric doesn’t match his record. Although Huntsman has been called “the greenest Republican in the presidential race” — which may account for the MSM’s otherwise inexplicable crush on him — his actual record has been exposed by the Environmental Integrity Project in a devastating report full of nasty little details like this:

[E]missions at two Huntsman Chemical plants increased significantly between 2009 and 2010, by more than 50 percent at the company’s facility in Port Neches, Texas. While the candidate is no longer a manager of The Huntsman Corporation, recent data show that he is heavily invested in the company. Furthermore, John Huntsman Jr. was a member of the board of directors when Huntsman employees committed the illegal acts that led to the company paying a substantial civil penalty and saw two managers sentenced to jail terms for illegal releases of benzene. . . .
None of the other candidates has a history of actual regulatory run-ins with the EPA, and none of them has a family connection with a corporation that is a major polluter today.

So while managers of his company go to jail for illegal pollution, Huntsman wants to go to the White House as a Friend of Gaia.

No wonder the liberals love him: He’s almost as phony as Obama.

UPDATE: Liberal commentator Jeff Greenfield sneers at Huntsman:

There is, of course, no formal political equivalent of the Lady Byng Trophy. Instead, every four years, the press corps dubs one candidate the exemplar of tough, honest, truth-telling, willing to confront his or her party’s orthodoxies with a cold blast of reality. That candidate wins praise from columnists; a warm embrace from a news magazine; admiring profiles on network news shows.
The only thing the Lady Byng winner never wins — never, ever, ever — is a presidential nomination.

There ought to be a lot more such sneering.

UPDATE II: The one candidate South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley won’t endorse.


19 Responses to “Gov. Benzene: Huntsman a ‘Green’ Phony”

  1. DaveO
    September 8th, 2011 @ 5:10 pm

    Huntsman is McCain. That’s reason enough for the MSM to love him. The mystery is whether he’s more John, or more Meghan McCain.

  2. Mortimer Snerd
    September 8th, 2011 @ 5:12 pm

    Well, he’s a handsome fellow, and he has that burnt-orange Boehner tan going for him.

  3. Anonymous
    September 8th, 2011 @ 5:47 pm

    Jeff Greenfield is incorrect – the GOP nominated Your Crazy Cousin in 2008, and we was the quintessential GOP “Maverick”, wasn’t he?

    In addition, who was the “Lady Byng” for the Democrats that cycle? I’m certain that he (or she) wouldn’t fit into the media’s schedule, since the were lavishing “praise from columnists; a warm embrace from a news magazine; admiring profiles on network news shows” on Obama – who merely covered the party’s sclerotic orthodoxies with a fresh face.

  4. McGehee
    September 8th, 2011 @ 5:58 pm

    When the movie is made of the chase for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, Huntsman will be played by Ray Wise.

  5. JeffS
    September 8th, 2011 @ 6:28 pm

    Huntsman lacks tits, so I’d say he’s closer to John.

  6. Guest
    September 8th, 2011 @ 6:52 pm

    Huntsman is a stalking horse. Follow his money & find his sponsors.

  7. Obi's Sister
    September 8th, 2011 @ 6:58 pm

    That pic captures the perfect smirk. 

  8. Mortimer Snerd
    September 8th, 2011 @ 7:08 pm

    I thought he was independently wealthy.

  9. Dell Hill
    September 8th, 2011 @ 7:10 pm

    Me thinks the competition is trying to determine the nominee again.  Can’t let that happen.  Huntsman has the same chance as Ron Paul & Mike Huckleberry – None.  Nothing to see here, folks, move along…

  10. Adjoran
    September 8th, 2011 @ 7:13 pm

    If Gary Johnson, Buddy Roemer, and the other <1% guy aren't invited, why is Huntsman?

    This once again boils down to giving media control over debates.  The media is NOT in charge of debates, their ONLY job is to broadcast and report them.  Candidates must start refusing to participate in dog and pony shows like this.

    Democrats don't have debates with Rush and Hannity and Hume on the panel, why do we allow Brian Williams and the Politico hacks?

    Eliminate panelists altogether, along with the stupid podiums.  Seat the 3-4 candidates with double digit support around a table with timers and a referee who ONLY enforces the agreed-upon rules and the time, which is evenly divided.  Candidates decide how much of their time to use at each turn, and how – to respond to another's question, to ask a question, or make a statement.  If they go long on their answers, they may use up their time and have no closing statement.

    Stop letting it be a moment in the spotlight for media attention whores.


    The whole "Lady Byng" award thing applies mainly to Republicans who attack the party from the left.  The Democratic equivalent is the contender who talks a moderate fight, but will govern as far left as he can, like Clinton or Obama.

  11. DaveO
    September 8th, 2011 @ 7:20 pm

    He doesn’t stalk for free.

  12. DaveO
    September 8th, 2011 @ 7:21 pm

    Or Carter, or Johnson.

  13. Joe
    September 8th, 2011 @ 8:09 pm

    Huntsman is a slightly less orange version of Charlie Crist.  But equally reliable for the conservative position–reliably unreliable! 

  14. Joe
    September 8th, 2011 @ 8:10 pm

    Maybe Charlie Crist will try to get into acting and play him and himself. 

  15. Joe
    September 8th, 2011 @ 8:11 pm

    Amen Brother Adjoran, Amen

  16. Republicanmother
    September 8th, 2011 @ 8:52 pm

    Let’s look at at his past. The guy was a diplomat, meaning he’s CFR. People who run in that circle always  play up the climate change hoax invented by Huxley descendant, Crispin Tickell.

  17. Anonymous
    September 8th, 2011 @ 8:53 pm

    I thought we settled the whole “sneaky equestrian/horses’ ass” thingy a couple days ago.

  18. Thursday Quick Links « Nice Deb
    September 8th, 2011 @ 6:17 pm

    […] The Other McCain again: Gov. Benzene: Huntsman a ‘Green’ Phony: […]

  19. ThePaganTemple
    September 9th, 2011 @ 12:43 pm

    It’s too bad the guy that played BOB is dead, cut his hair and he’d be a perfect Ron Paul.