Huntsman plays down incident: “I thought it was pretty funny”

Steve Watson
January 5, 2012

Paul & Huntsman

In a somewhat underhanded move, CNN presenter Piers Morgan challenged Ron Paul on the mysterious twitter message directed at John Huntsman that was sent from the Congressman’s official account shortly after the results in Iowa were announced Tuesday night.

The interview started off brightly with Paul afforded the time to express his views on why so many young people are flocking to his campaign.

“I ask a lot of questions of the young people and they give me different answers.” Paul noted. “They’re always very complimentary. Sometimes it’s just — it sounds like you’re the only one telling the truth, it sounds like you will obey the constitution and you’ll vote by yourself if you have to.”

“And they talk about foreign policy. I think young people are just not anxious to be sent off to war. And they have become fascinated with my interest in monetary policy, and there’s a financial crisis going on. So they’re actually studying, you know, the Federal Reserve and monetary policy. So they give us all this interest.” The Congressman continued.

“But I think overall it’s my emphasis on liberty per se, just liberty, having the freedom to run your life as you so choose, as well as spend your money as you so choose. And that is a very powerful message and very attractive to young people.” Paul added.

As the interview progressed, Morgan became more aggressive, opening the second segment by asking Paul to react to the fact that “your opponents always present you as someone crazy.”

“I get a charge out of this when they say these views are extreme,” Paul answered, adding “freedom is a young idea.”

“Historically it hasn’t been around all that long. We’ve had a great test, you know, in our country. And we’re losing this.” The Congressman continued.

“But most people have lived under tyranny. And that is the main thing. Young people, and people much younger than I am, are accepting way too much government, whether it’s militarism, whether it’s violation of our civil liberties, or whether it’s regulating and socializing our economy, and special interest protection by the Federal Reserve.” he said.

“I mean, these things are old ideas. And this is why I think I’m very much electable. But it’s also strange that they say that these views, you know, are real strange. But I defend the constitution. Why should balancing the budget and defending the constitution, and doing the things I talk about, all of a sudden they say, oh, you can’t be elected with those views. But they’re saying, oh, we hate the constitution. We hate personal liberties. We hate privacy. We hate the Fourth Amendment.”

“We think we should be the policemen of the world. That’s what they’re saying when they’re saying I’m unelectable. But they ought to deal with the issue itself because the views that I hold and the strict adherence to the constitution and my voting record, they know that I would stick to those views. And I think that’s what they’re frightened about because they’ve gotten used to the status quo, and the status quo is big government.” Paul urged.

Without informing Paul that Huntsman was directly listening in on the interview Morgan began pressing the issue on the Twiiter incident.

The Tweet in question, which was sent as Iowa caucus votes were being counted, read: “@JonHuntsman, we found your one Iowa voter, he’s in Linn precinct 5 you might want to call him and say thanks.”

Paul spokesman Gary Howard told CBS News that the Paul campaign believed the tweet was unauthorized, resulting in its initial deletion. However, the message then mysteriously reappeared later.

The Congressman, when asked to comment about the incident live on CNN yesterday, was unaware that the message had been sent by his staff.

“What would you like to say to Jon Huntsman? Do you want to apologize for telling me that you found his one Iowa voter?” Morgan asked.

The Congressman explained that the message was sent out by one of his staff members without his knowledge, adding “It was supposed to be good humor. And, I mean, I just didn’t think that was a big deal.”

” I was in the midst of a rally or a speech when that stuff was going on.” Paul continued, “So I think that was rather quickly gone through, and I think it was supposed to be something, you know, a little high-spirited and a little bit funny. But it turned out to be a national incident.”

Morgan, who is well known as a former tabloid editor in the UK, then informed Paul that Huntsman was listening in and charged that the Congressman was “completely unaware of what your staff are doing under your name half the time.”

Paul responded, commenting “Look, it was just a little thing. And they were trying to be funny. And I told them afterwards, after I got stuck with that, I said, you know, that isn’t very funny to have me get caught on national television, and not know what’s going on. But it was meant to be in good humor.”

To his credit, Huntsman refused to be baited by Morgan on the subject and admitted it was really a non-issue.

“I have to tell you, at the end of the day, I actually found it to be pretty humorous. I discovered it last night. Somebody shared it with me. And I thought it was pretty funny.” Huntsman said.

“You’ve got to have a little bit of levity and humor in this business or you’d go crazy. So just tell Dr. Paul that I owe him a tweet in return, and he should be — he should be expecting one sometime soon.” he added.

Watch the entire interview below:



Steve Watson is the London based writer and editor for Alex Jones’, and He has a Masters Degree in International Relations from the School of Politics at The University of Nottingham in England.

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