Which 2012 Republican presidential candidate has directed all of his money and energy toward locking up an early state in the hopes of jumpstarting a run mired in anonymity? If you guessed Rick Santorum, you're half right. And if the former Pennsylvania senator's strong showing in Iowa is any indication, a Mormon former governor could stand to replace him as the candidate du jour. No, not Mitt Romney. Jon Huntsman.

The former Utah governor has, much like Santorum in Iowa, put all of his campaign eggs in New Hampshire, hoping for a similar outcome in the state's primary next Tuesday. Despite languishing in the polls, Huntsman has made more than 150 appearances in the Granite State, which he hopes will pay off and catapult him into the new Republican of Choice -- Santorum's success serving as the model.

If you're willing to get in a car and put in the hours that Rick Santorum is putting in, and working hard at the grassroots level, you'll have something to show for it, Huntsman said.

But the former Utah governor's climb promises to be difficult, as his support in New Hampshire seems to be flagging. According to a recent Suffolk University/7News poll, Huntsman has dropped three points, from 10 to 7 percent, while Romney maintained his lead at 43 percent. In fact, Huntsman is sitting behind Texas Rep. Ron Paul and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

Santorum, it should be noted, is actually behind Huntsman according to the poll, which was taken before his Iowa breakthrough.

The number of undecided voters has jumped by 3 percent, to 16, indicating that Huntsman isn't doing a good job of siphoning off weary voters.

Romney: Regional Edge

Romney's proximity to the state during his tenure as governor of Massachusetts, along with the state's libertarian streak, leaves Huntsman at a distinct disadvantage.

According to the Washington Post, Huntsman backer and former Homeland Security Secretary and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Ridge cannot even summon up enough positivity to give the candidate good odds.

He has a shot at second, maybe, Ridge said. This is Romney's state. A libertarian state, so Ron Paul will do well. So third or fourth, either way he [Huntsman] becomes a part of the debate.

Given the Republican electorate's propensity for an Attention Deficit Disorder-like lack of focus, one could see how Huntsman is eagerly awaiting his turn. But his history as a moderate in a decidedly partisan primary may hurt him.

Where to begin when listing his Republican foibles? He believes in some sort of climate change. He clearly falls on the dove side of the military spectrum. Worst of all? He counts Barack Obama as a former employer, serving until quite recently as U.S. ambassador to China. The experience has also tempered his view on foreign relations with Asia.

Huntsman hopes Santorum's boost from Iowa will wear off, and that Saturday night's debate will refresh his own presence in the race.

You know, Iowa's going to be forgotten about one day, Huntsman said. And then everyone's going to be focused on New Hampshire, because you're the first primary. And as New Hampshire speaks, everybody tends to listen.