Analysts: Huntsman's views could pit him against Romney

Analysts: Huntsman's views could pit him against Romney

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SALT LAKE CITY -- Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. may not exactly have been a crowd favorite at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC), considering some of his centrist views, like gay rights.

He said the GOP needs to be more intellectually rigorous. He told Republicans need to take up the middle on issues like gay rights, immigration and the environment.

While that may not ignite the conservative core, analysts say those views could appeal to a wider base. It might pit him squarely against Utah's other favorite son, Mitt Romney, who was the straw poll winner at CPAC.

University of Utah political science professor Tim Chambless says some of the governor's views could hurt him in primaries.

"The candidates that emerge are usually supported by the left-wing, right-wing elements of the parties. The moderate candidates have a tough time," he said.

Chambless says it's too early to tell how Huntsman will stack up against Romney.


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