Huntsman calls for civility, labels Romney 'a large varmint'

by Anna Taydor

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 22, 2011 — Little-known Jon Huntsman Jr., after throwing his hat in the ring as Republican candidate for president, called today for civility in politics and then provided an example by calling frontrunner Mitt Romney "a large varmint."

Huntsman used the term while visiting a gun shop in New Hampshire, where he is kicking off his campaign.

"I could have called Mitt a skunk, a weasel or a rat," he said while pondering a purchase at M.T. Brass's Gun Shop in Ruger, N.H. "But I'm bigger than that. And so is Mitt. He's a wolf in sheep's clothing, and he's as wiley as a coyote."

Skinnyreporter caught up with Romney in Remington, Iowa, where he and Campaign Manager Carr Bean were taking part in a mouse and rat shoot in a local cornfield.

"It is true that I prefer to eliminate small varmints," he said. "Sarah Palin likes to go after moose and caribou, but I'm happy to pick off little varmints and snakes."

Huntsman, who resigned from his post as President Obama's ambassador to China to run for president, said his main advantage over Romney is his ability to work with Democrats.

"I worked for President Obama," he said, "and I also believe we can stop global warming by riding bikes and driving electric cars. I'm happy to support the Democrats in shutting down the oil and coal industries."

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“I have often seen people uncivil by too much civility, and tiresome in their courtesy. ” — Michel de Montaigne

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