CafeMom Hosts Forum With Jon Huntsman Jan. 16 in SC: Post Your Questions Here!

Jon HuntsmanWe weren't satisfied with one presidential candidate forum on January 16, or even two.

Nope. CafeMom is hosting three different candidates in South Carolina on Monday -- Rick Perry at 11:00 a.m., Rick Santorum at 1:30 p.m., and now Jon Huntsman at 3:00 p.m.! Pollster Frank Luntz and I, along with a room full of moms, will be asking each candidate questions about the issues that matter most to YOU -- but to do that, we need your help!

Do you have a question for Jon Huntsman, or do you live in the Myrtle Beach area and want to ask him your question in person?

Ask a question in the comments of this post and we just might use it during our event!

Plus, I have an RSVP link for the event, as well as some interesting facts about this former Utah governor ... after the jump!


Here's what you need to know about GOP candidate Jon Huntsman:

  • Jon Huntsman is the oldest of nine siblings, born in Palo Alto, California, to Jon and Karen Huntsman. His dad is the founder of Huntsman Corporation, a chemical company, and is worth an estimated $1 billion.

  • When Huntsman's brother, David, was 16, he was kidnapped and held for $1 million ransom.

  • Huntsman went to high school in Salt Lake City, Utah. That's where he met his wife, Mary Kaye Cooper. He dropped out of high school when he turned 18 in order to play keyboard for his band, Wizards.

  • He later went to college at the University of Utah, but left for a two-year Mormon mission to Taiwan. He learned to speak Mandarin Chinese, which he now speaks fluently.

  • He returned and worked as an aide to Sen. Orrin Hatch, then as an assistant to President Ronald Reagan. He got back in touch with Mary Kaye and the couple married in 1982. They have seven children together, including one adopted from India and another from China.

  • Huntsman got his college degree in 1987 from the University of Pennsylvania, became vice president of Huntsman Pacific Chemical Corporation and Huntsman International, and moved his family to Taiwan.

  • In 1989 under George H.W. Bush, he was made deputy assistant secretary for the Trade Development Bureau of the Commerce Department. In 1990, he became deputy assistant secretary of commerce for East Asia and the Pacific. In 1992, he was named the U.S. ambassador to Singapore. In 2001, George W. Bush named him U.S. trade representative and U.S. trade ambassador.

  • In 2003, his children told him they were tired of his traveling and said they wanted him to come home and run for governor of Utah. He was elected governor of Utah in 2004 and re-elected in 2008. While governor, he gave Utah the largest tax cut in its history.

  • In 2009, Obama named him ambassador to China. He left the position in 2011, ostensibly to prepare to run for president.

  • Huntsman is considered to be more moderate than the other GOP candidates. This and his ties to Obama are worrisome to some Republican voters. Says Melinda Henneberger in a Time magazine profile: "Democrats who fear that Huntsman would do well against Obama in next year's general election are busy pelting him with rose petals -- take that, you wonderful man! -- that they openly hope will disqualify him in the eyes of Republican Party regulars."

  • Regarding gay marriage, he's in favor of civil unions for same-sex couples and opposes same-sex marriage -- but says he would leave that issue to the states.

  • Regarding immigration, he wants to build a fence on the US-Mexico border, then start talking about what to do about illegal immigrants already in the US.

  • Huntsman wants to repeal Obamacare and reform healthcare using a model he used while he was governor in Utah.

  • One recent Tweet directed at Rick Perry makes his thoughts on evolution and global warming clear: "I believe in evolution and trust scientists on global warming. Call me crazy."

  • Huntsman's tax plan calls for a three-tier rate (8, 14, and 23 percent) instead of the current six. He would also eliminate capital gain and dividend taxes and reduce corporate taxes from 35 to 25 percent.

  • He supports a balanced budget amendment and would consider cuts to military spending.

  • Regarding abortion, Huntman is pro-life and has said that he supports restrictions on abortion except in the cases of rape or incest. He has also said that he supports a right to life amendment.

Got a question for Jon Huntsman? Ask it in the comments and we just might read your question aloud during our event. And if you live in the Myrtle Beach area and would like to attend this forum, go here to RSVP.

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