As I mentioned the other day (or was it yesterday? The days are starting to run together.) I have been volunteering at Jon Huntsman headquarters for the past week. It has been incredibly hectic, since I live about 70 miles away from Manchester and am still working my day job. But ultimately it has been one of the most rewarding things I have ever done. There are some incredible people working for Jon Huntsman. And when I think I have it tough I think about their stories. Some people drove or flew from across the country. Others put their lives on hold to help out full time. And the full-time staff have to manage an ever-changing (and ever-growing) herd of cats, finding order and getting the most out of us for Jon. So I can handle driving 1,000 miles in a little more than a week.
But for those of you who are wondering, there is a real, tangible excitement on the ground in NH this weekend. I will write about it in more detail once the NH Primary is over and Jon has moved on to South Carolina. But this weekend changed everything for the campaign. Jon tapped into two themes which have resonated with voters in a way that even he may not have expected. One is the issue of divisiveness in politics and the second is his “Country First” counter to Mitt Romney’s attack on Governor Huntsman’s service to his country under President Obama. Both issues have drastically weakened Mitt and have propelled Jon’s campaign. Second place is very, very possible. And first place is not out of the realm of possibility.
You may not see this in the press (though even the mainstream media is taking notice of Jon’s surge here in NH). But you’ll just have to trust me on this. The momentum is with Jon at a time when undecided voters are making up their minds (WMUR believes that as many as 40% still may be undecided). And the enthusiasm of Jon’s supporters (and without question his volunteers) beat out what I saw from other supporters at the events I attended this weekend by a country mile. And best of all? The campaign is seeing donations roll in from across the country (not just New Hampshire).
So, in short, can Jon Huntsman really do this? As they say in New Hampshire, “Ayuh.”