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Kristin Murphy, Deseret News
Jon Huntsman Jr.

With all news Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman Jr. have been making this week as two would-be Mormon presidential candidates, you knew this sort of piece was in the pipeline: Politico has a new piece up titled "The Mormon Primary: Mitt Romney vs. Jon Huntsman."

Money quote:

One Utahn put it this way: Romney is Brigham Young University, Huntsman is the University of Utah. … The analogy explains everything about the contrast between Romney and Huntsman. Romney was a local leader in the church; Huntsman downplays his faith. Romney was widely mocked when he claimed to be a hunter; Huntsman can frequently be found on a motorcycle or dirt bike, looking perfectly at ease as a man of the people despite his wealth.

Another snip:

Many in Utah have personal connections to both men, and most have cast ballots for both. Romney got nearly 90 percent of the vote in the state's 2008 presidential primary; as Utah governor, Huntsman's approval rating was measured at an astounding 90 percent a few months before he left office.

A recent poll of Utah voters, conducted in January for the Exoro Group, asked respondents who they'd rather see as the GOP presidential candidate. Romney was the choice of 48 percent, while Huntsman was picked by 28 percent.

The Politico article may prove to be but the tip of the proverbial iceberg in a Romney-versus-Huntsman comparison and debate that's just getting started.

e-mail: jaskar@desnews.com

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