The missing 'h' in Jon M Huntsman Jr’s name is making unwanted appearances on his campaign trail in the New Hampshire primary.
Already hampered by his late start and faced with a very strong opponent, Mitt Romney, in his race for GOP presidential nomination, Huntsman’s campaign mangers cannot afford to get it wrong again.
Direct mailers flooding voters’ inboxes have spelt his name as John instead of Jon. This is not the first time. In June , at the beginning of his campaign the press was presented with his credentials with the extra ‘h’.
When Huntsman was asked about the error, he made a joke of it.
"Well, I come from a long line of illiterates. They forgot to put the "h" in my name and sometimes that comes back to haunt me," he joked.
Huntsman has not had a good campaign run till now. His race for presidential nomination in the must-win primary of New Hampshire has been termed slow and lackluster by analysts.
He had a late start compared to his adversaries. Till this spring he was serving as an ambassador to China. His campaign team that was formed in his absentia was not too good at getting off the ground even after he joined the race in May. He lost his campaign manger Susie Wiles just a month into the race.
Her place was taken by Matt David, touted as an aggressive campaign manager. He has worked with Arnold Schwarzenegger, the former governor of California, President George W Bush and Senator John McCain of Arizona.
“In the coming weeks, our campaign needs to be and will be more aggressive from a message and a tactical standpoint,” said Tim Miller, the campaign spokesman. He said the campaign would do more to “differentiate ourselves from the president and from our Republican rivals,” according to the New York Times.
Even after these internal changes, a few more executives left the campaign. Right in the middle of these upsets is John Weaver, the chief campaign strategist, whose management style is found to be too interfering and intimidating, according to politico.com.
Add to this the very public spat involving David Fischer, a family friend and part of the campaign, before he was allegedly asked to leave, and Huntsman’s campaign managers.
Both sides are accusing each other of harming Huntsman’s efforts.
Further harming the ex-governor’s attempts to win the nomination race is the campaign money he has been able to raise. He has garnered $4 million for his campaign fund, half of which comes from his personal wealth. Compare this to $18 million that Romney has collected!
Analysts feel that not enough is being done to advance his campaign and the hype surrounding his strategists is not being translated, especially in New Hampshire, an important state.
In a recent CNN/ORC national survey of Republican voters, Huntsman garnered just 1 percent, falling behind nearly every other GOP candidate.