Jon Huntsman Jr. still foreign to voters

Published: Wednesday, July 6 2011 9:38 a.m. MDT

Although a new Gallup poll reveals former Utah governor Jon Huntsman Jr. remains a relative unknown to most Republican voters, Team Huntsman is confident the lack of name recognition is merely the byproduct of a campaign in its early stages.

Polling conducted June 20-July 3 in all 50 states and the District of Columbia shows Huntsman is recognized by 42 percent of Republicans — more than double the 20-percent name recognition Gallup attached to Huntsman earlier this year, but low enough for Gallup to note that Huntsman is still "less well known than Herman Cain, Rick Santorum or Tim Pawlenty, and is recognized by less than half as many Republicans as know Mitt Romney or Sarah Palin."

When asked by the Deseret News for his response to Gallup's new poll, Huntsman's chief strategist John Weaver shrugged it off and exclaimed, "He's been in the race for two weeks!"

Weaver makes a salient point: at the time the Gallup started polling Republicans on June 20, Huntsman hadn't even officially announced his candidacy.

Huntsman spokesperson Tim Miller echoed Weaver's refrain: "(42 percent) is double where he was last month. He's still being introduced to the electorate."

EMAIL: jaskar@desnews.com twitter: askargo

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